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Closing the budget gap

The options the council has to close this gap are:

  1. reduce cost/increase income
  2. use reserves
  3. increase Council Tax

Reducing costs while protecting services is becoming harder every year. The council has faced real-term reductions in funding levels over more than ten years with around £100m cuts in the revenue budget since then.

Over the last year, officers have worked hard again to identify savings and income proposals. Last summer, in the early stages of our budget process work, we talked to people as part of our Let’s Keep Talking Campaign about what matters to them. And, in December, formal consultation started on the draft budget when more than 550 people gave us feedback which was carefully considered in developing the final budget proposals.

In addition, separate consultations took place on specific proposals.

We listened closely to people's views and made several amendments to the budget proposals:

  • the possible ending of licence agreements and public access rights on the upper and lower sections of the Neath Canal will not progress
  • following feedback that most people would not agree with switching streetlights off, we will now be recommending these be dimmed not switched off
  • another proposal involving recovery of costs from schools for certain council services such as cleaning, will now be amended to reduce the impact on schools as much as possible

There was broad agreement that specific reserves should be used to fund social services costs with a view to implementing longer term cost saving measures.

Closing the gap in numbers

The £30.1m budget gap has been reduced to £6.7m through:

  • additional Welsh Government funding - £8.6m
  • a contribution from reserves - £6m
  • savings - £6.6m
  • income generation proposals - £2.2m

This £6.7m gap will need to be funded through Council Tax.

Closing the gap in numbers Closing the gap in numbers

Find out more about your Council Tax and how it is spent helping fund services in Neath Port Talbot.