Council sees budget saving despite tough economic climate

Published on 19th June 2012

White piggy bank with black flower design

Despite the current difficult economic circumstances, Cheltenham Borough Council has ended the 2011/12 financial year with a small budget saving of £149k.

This is a turnaround from the overspend of £476k, projected earlier in the year and has been achieved as a result of careful management of spend and maximising income across the board.

Mark Sheldon, director of resources said: "This is a major achievement and is particularly impressive in a period of significant change. It comes at a time when we are implementing a major IT system to support the creation of a shared service to provide finance, human resources, payroll and procurement for four councils plus Cheltenham Borough Homes; as well as creating a new company (Ubico) to deliver cleansing, waste and recycling services to Cheltenham Borough Council and waste and re-cycling services to Cotswold District Council."

John Rawson, deputy leader of the council and cabinet member for finance, said: "This result demonstrates the robustness of the Council's financial management. At a time of great financial pressure, we have delivered a modest saving of £149,777, which is equivalent to about one quarter of one percent of the Council's gross budget. We are proposing to invest the saving in our homelessness services, in boosting recycling and in strengthening our planning appeals reserve at a time of uncertainty about national planning policy."

He added: "We are also proposing to use the £100k of High Street Innovation Fund money we were awarded by the Government to encourage business start-ups through business rate discounts and in a number of other ways that will help retail business in the town."