Recommendation to increase Council Tax to be put to councillors
A recommendation to increase Council Tax in Lancashire by 3.99% is to be put to councillors at a meeting later this month.
Members of Lancashire County Council's cabinet agreed this afternoon to make the recommendation after hearing the increase would include a 2% rise for adult social care.
At this afternoon's meeting, cabinet members were told that the medium term financial forecast for the county council had improved since last year, but the authority still faced a financial deficit year on year.
Latest figures show, subject to confirmation of final funding levels, a financial deficit of £21.690m is anticipated to be met from reserves in 2022/23, rather than the anticipated £30.470m. By 2024/25 the deficit is expected to be £42.830m rather than the £50.048m previously forecast.
The council is also forecast to hold £204.450m of uncommitted transitional reserve at the end of this financial year, which includes a forecast underspend of £23.46m for 2021/22.
Members heard this would be sufficient to meet the forecast gap for all of the years covered by the Medium-Term Financial Strategy, 2022/23 to 2024/25, but there is a clear intention to identify savings during 2022/23 to reduce the funding gap in future years.
County Councillor Alan Vincent, deputy leader of the council, said: "Deciding on any rise in Council Tax is always a very difficult decision.
"The cabinet has carefully considered the council's on-going financial situation, taking into account that like all councils we continue to face significant pressures and need to ensure we achieve a financially sustainable position.
"At the same time our priority is to continue to provide the best services possible for the people of Lancashire, particularly our older residents.
"After discussion it was decided to recommend to full council that this year's rise should be 3.99%, which importantly includes a 2% rise for adult social care, which will help ensure services for some of our most vulnerable residents are protected.
"The final decision will be taken at our full council meeting on February 17."
For more information visit https://council.lancashire.gov.uk/documents/s190737/Report.pdf