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LIVE BLOG: Warrington budget 2014
Updated 7:44am Tuesday 4th March 2014 in News
This live event has finished
- Councillors to vote on budget for 2014/15
- Meeting set to start at 6.30pm at the Town Hall
- Proposed budget includes £16.2 million in cuts for the coming year
- Capital schemes put forward include loans to household for energy efficency works
- Council tax looks set to rise by 1.98 per cent
THERE are no questions from the public and councillors or motions.
Clr Steve Parish is appointed to the Liverpool Airport board on behalf of the council.
And that brings the meeting to a close.
THE budget has been passed unanimously.
NOW the budget is about to be voted on by each councillor.
LIB Dem leader Clr Ian Marks questioned the detail of the consultation.
He also praised the work done to help business growth by Warrington & Co and the Warrington Means Business programme which he says his adminstration had first started.
HE added support to capital projects but urged scrutiny over spending.
Clr Kennedy added:"It is a great responsibility spending taxpayers money. We must always remember careless spending has a huge reputational cost."
HE said his party would support the budget.
THE Conservative leader Clr Paul Kennedy is now replying on behalf of his party.
BUT he calls on the administration to reallocate £100,000 in an executive fund not put forward for any project to be spent on reinstating £25,000 set to come from CSO budgets, money put towards charity and dealing with roads.
TALKING about the scheme to lend money to registered social landlords Clr Walker said: "Over the net three years potentially £500 million will be invested in local housing. Not all houses will be built in Warrington but will mean new houses and jobs for Warrington people."
HE says the Lib Dems will support the budget with some reservations.
NOW Clr Peter Walker will reply on behalf of the Liberal Democrats.
THERE are £30 million plans in capital funding out of a pot of £710 million to fund highways improvements over the coming years
CLR Bowden reiterates up to 75 posts will go but hopes most will be through job deletion when staff leave and voluntary redundancies - keeping compulsory job cuts to a minimum.
THIS year's cuts equate to £32 per head he adds.
Last year I said we were at the end of salami slicing and that's born out by this budget. For the first time we are simply looking at stopping doing things the council has done.Clr Russ Bowden
CLR Russ Bowden says since 2010/11 the council it has seen cuts of £74 million.
FOR the first time the budget vote will be a recorded one where each councillor votes individually under new Government rules.
COUNCILLORS approve a treasury management strategy unanimously and move quickly on to the budget debate.
It's been local authorities that have been protecting our communities from these savage cuts and it doesn't look like it's going to be over for the next few years.Council leader Clr Terry O'Neill
COUNCIL leader Clr Terry O'Neill has said in his announcement councils across the country have all faced cuts from Government.
NOW to the Mayor's civic announcements highlighting the number of commemorative events he has attended including one marking the battle of Pieter's Hill.
THERE are also details of absent councillors including that of Clr Bennett - who had voted against the budget of his own party last year.
THE meeting starts with formalities including minutes of the previous meeting and declarations of any interest in topics to be discussed.
THE Mayor of Warrington Clr Peter Carey has now entered the chamber and the meeting is now under way with the Mayor's chaplain, the Rev Stephen Kingsnorth addressing councillors.
THE council chamber is starting to fill up for the meeting.
Last year's meeting saw Clr Kevin Bennett, one of the Labour-led adminstration's own councillors, vote against his party's budget.
Will there be any unexpected moves in tonight's meeting.
BUT there are still plans to invest in new projects including loans to households to help pay for energy efficency improvements.
And £200,000 will be invested in the crazy golf course at Walton Hall Gardens in the coming year.
UP to 75 jobs could be lost as the authority looks to fill the financial gap along with service redesigns.
THIS year's budget continues the trend of reduced funding which leaves the council with a £16.2 million deficit to fill.
Speaking as he presented the budget to the executive board Clr Russ Bowden, executive board member for corporate resources and assignments, said: “We have some £16.2 million worth of savings bearing in mind it comes on top of £50 million savings in previous years.
“That £16.2 million is only part of £50 million worth of savings we need to make over the next four years.
“We are looking at opportunities for income to mitigate the impact on some resources and decisions on service cuts."
COUNCILLORS will tonight vote on whether to approve the financial budget for the town for 2014/15 including setting the council tax for the coming year.
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