East Sussex County Council’s Cabinet met on Tuesday (24) to discuss the proposed 2017/18 budget which sets a savings target of £17million.
While agreeing the majority of the proposals, Cabinet members put forward an amendment which would also allocate funding to the Duke of Edinburgh Scheme and Youth Cabinet, with greater investment also being made in the county’s roads and pavements.
Additional funding would also be made available for the council’s community match scheme, which allows town and parish councils to work with the county to deliver schemes important to local communities.
“Throughout this process we have promised to listen to residents, partners and our council colleagues about what services are important to them,” said Cllr David Elkin, lead member for resources.
“We have thought long and hard and believe that the proposals we are putting forward to full council achieve the right balance for East Sussex residents, businesses and communities.
“This remains, without doubt, one of the most challenging budgets we have faced in East Sussex. But we are confident that we have something deliverable and sustainable which makes the best use of out limited resources.”
Cabinet’s amendments to the budget proposals, identifies £1.65 million – which would come from a reduction in the contribution to the capital fund – to be used for services and investment including;
– The co-ordination the Duke of Edinburgh scheme (£29,000)
– organising the election and running of the Youth Cabinet (£41,000)
– providing junior Autistic Spectrum Disorder activity sessions (£52,000)
– Investing a further £1.3million in highways drainage and pavements
– Making a further £150,000 available in the Community Match scheme
In addition, the Cabinet proposes to allocate a one-off payment of £750,000 to schools,
The proposed £365million budget includes savings of £17million, a three per cent adult social care levy agreed by Government and a 1.99 per cent council tax increase – which would result in a total increase to the county council’s precept of 4.99 per cent.
A final decision on the budget will be made by full council on Tuesday, February 7.