At their meeting on 26 January 2023, Horsham District Council Cabinet Members will be asked to set the Council’s financial and capital budget for the coming financial year which starts in April. This follows receipt of information from central Government about the amount of positive provisional financial settlement the Council will receive during the coming year.
Despite the significant cost increases from inflation, good financial management and healthy reserves put the Council in a good position to sensibly invest both now and in the future, including significant investments to help vulnerable residents struggling with the cost- of- living crisis and investments to meet the environmental challenges of the climate emergency.
We continue to charge the lowest Council Tax in West Sussex and remain in the lowest quartile in the UK, yet we maintain high quality services for our residents.
In 2023/24, the Council will be:
- Spending £1million to help support residents in need as a result of the current cost of living crisis
- Setting aside £15million in an Environment and Infrastructure Reserve to be spent on climate change, helping to reduce the Council’s direct emissions to help it become carbon neutral by 2030, and key infrastructure replacements.
- Carrying out an ambitious £8.5 million capital programme providing infrastructure and facilities for residents.
The Council is budgeting for breakeven in 2023/24. The net budget requirement for 2023/24 at £13.5m is £1.2m higher than (£12.3m) in 2022/23, reflecting the significant impact of annual inflationary and salary cost pressures.
Cabinet will recommend to full Council that the level of Council Tax for 2023/24 increases from £162.09 by £4.85 (2.99%) to £166.94 at Band D.
Horsham District Council Acting Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance and Parking Cllr Tony Hogben commented:
This year’s budget setting process has been one of the most challenging we have ever faced.
Against this backdrop, as a result of prudent financial planning over a number of years, we can continue to work to deliver our ambitious capital programme plans and continue to deliver high quality services for the benefit of residents of the District.
I am particularly pleased that we are in a position to recommend extra funds to support vulnerable residents during these difficult times, and also that we can build upon the great start we have made to reduce our carbon emissions and protect our local environment.
The proposals, if supported, will be recommended to full Council on 22 February 2023.
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