Susan van de Ven

Liberal Democrat County Councillor for Bassingbourn, Melbourn, Meldreth and Whaddon Learn more

Cambridgeshire County Council sets its budget

by Susan van de Ven on 9 February, 2022

The Liberal Democrat group on Cambridgeshire County Council at today’s budget setting meeting.

Cambridgeshire County Council’s Full Council today set its budget for the year starting in April.  

The budget closes a projected £22.2 million gap using efficiencies, savings, and the government’s one-year financial settlement. It also starts to address a projected gap of more than £80 million over the next five years.

The County Council share of council tax will increase by 4.99 per cent – 1.99 per cent for general services, and a 3 per cent rise for Adult Social Care. This will mean an extra charge of 90p per week for a Band A household, £1.04 per week for a Band B household, and £1.19 for a Band C household. The increase in Band D is £1.34 per week, which will still leave the County Council’s council tax share below the average for shire counties.

The increase comes at a time when many families are struggling with increases outside the council’s control, such as National Insurance, energy bills, and food price rises. The council’s budget therefore offers a safety net for those least able to pay.

The budget offers support through

  • The Household Support Fund – a one-off £20 payment open to all 39,000 Cambridgeshire people on universal credit, as well as extra help for specific bills or replacement of essential items such as cookers, washing machines or fridges.
  • Continued funding for Free School Meals throughout the school holidays – £15 per week for each eligible child.
  • A 100 per cent council tax rebate for care leavers until they reach the age of 21, and a targeted fund to support them, if they need it, until they are 25.
  • A £1 million ‘catch up’ fund to help children catch up on activities which help them learn skills, build self-confidence and make friends.

In addition, the council’s business plan pledges to deliver a ‘just transition’ towards a more equal and sustainable Cambridgeshire. 

The council’s business plans also includes:

  • A £2.9 million countywide programme to support older people living in their own communities and homes for longer – part of a proposed investment in a new vision to create a fairer and more caring Cambridgeshire.
  • Increased investment in projects which support biodiversity and access to open spaces.
  • More investment to improve safety on roads, and the accessibility of footways and bridle paths.
  • A continued roll out of the Real Living Wage, not just for lowest paid council staff but working with contractor and supplier organisations to make this aspiration a reality as soon as possible.

You can watch the full recorded debate on the council’s YouTube channel here

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