Coronavirus pandemic expected to cost Buckinghamshire Council £39 million

The coronavirus pandemic is expected to cost Buckinghamshire Council £39 million by the end of this financial year — but that’s before government money is added to the authority’s purse.

Monday, 27th July 2020, 1:54 pm
Updated Monday, 27th July 2020, 1:57 pm
A new report set to be discussed next week breaks down the price of the pandemic for each of the councils departments, including social care, childrens services, communities and more.

A new report set to be discussed next week breaks down the price of the pandemic for each of the council’s departments, including social care, children’s services, communities and more.

According to the report’s attached financial breakdowns, coronavirus can be blamed for overspending worth £39 million across all the authority’s different branches.

But this spending does not take into account the £29 million already received from the government.

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Nor does it consider an announcement made earlier this month of a new support package for councils which will reimburse them for some of the income they have lost from sales and charges over the past few months.

Councillor Katrina Wood, Buckinghamshire Council’s resources chief, told the Free Press the authority is estimating it will get around £10 million from the income reimbursement scheme, but bosses are still waiting on guidance related to the initiative.

This just leaves extra spending from non-coronavirus related fees, which is expected to total around £5.3 million by the end of March next year.

With all this considered, the forecasted overspend for the 2020/2021 financial year is £5.97 million.

The council’s finances are set to be discussed at a meeting of the authority’s top team on Tuesday, July 2020.