Council approves rates rise

Martin Tett

Martin Tett

Bucks County Council has approved a 1.5% increase in council tax - which it says will be used to protect key services.

At a meeting today, the full council also approved a £65 million investment in roads and pavements.

In presenting the budget to councillors, leader Martin Tett said the increase was ‘prudent’ and ‘vital’ to help protect vulnerable residents.

The cash for roads will be spent over the next four years, and £200,000 has also been allocated to help protect children against sexual exploitation.

Mr Tett said: “Despite far better news for the UK economy as a whole, thanks to the government, for local government the financial road ahead will be very tough.

“Only those local authorities who see and understand this and who plan and respond now will survive intact.

“This budget faces up to difficult decisions. It includes major cost savings and increases in income.

“It is a tough budget for tough times into the foreseeable future but it is also a budget that begins a long term strategy for financial stability and sustainability.”

Cabinet member for finance and resources Peter Hardy also announced that the council had recouped most of the £5million it lost after the collapse of the Iceland national bank.

£4.6 million or 93 per cent of the funds have now been returned to the council, after its claim to the cash was sold at auction.

Mr Hardy said: “We are obviously pleased that we have recovered the vast majority of our Landsbanki Islands deposit. The sale of our claim represents a clean break, and we are no longer a creditor of Landsbanki Islands.”




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