We want to hear the opinions of all residents, partner organisations, businesses and other interested parties as part of the 2019/20 budget setting process.
The first tranche of a plan which details how Peterborough City Council will look to deliver a balanced budget over the next three financial years was published on Friday 1 June 2018. These proposals begin to close a gap in the council's budget which will reach 22.3million by 2021/22.
Since the government's austerity programme began in 2010, the amount of funding that all councils receive has fallen at an alarming rate.
In 2013/14 the city council received £55million in Revenue Support Grant, the government grant which supports a range of council services. This has reduced to just £15million in 2018/19 and £10million in 2019/20. That will be a reduction of 80 per cent over seven years.
Peterborough is one of the fastest growing cities in the UK, in terms of population growth, and demand for certain services is rapidly increasing. However, current government funding takes no account of population growth or demand levels. Instead, our funding reduces year on year.
At the same time the council has seen unprecedented demand in services, in particular meeting the needs of a rising number of homeless households and an ever growing number of adults and elderly people requiring care.
This year, the council will follow a new budget process throughout the year, which will have three tranches. Tranche One in June, tranche two in November and tranche three in February 2019.
The decision to introduce this approach allows the council to spread the workload of identifying and implementing savings and efficiencies across the year, driving out savings earlier and keeping concentration on its finances to ensure any shortfalls are quickly identified and addressed.
There will be tough challenges ahead to continue to deliver a balanced budget. However, even during the most difficult circumstances, we remain committed to our priorities and Peterborough has made huge strides forward. We will continue to invest in the city and deliver a wide range of services. We'll do this by developing new ways of generating income, bidding for external funding and delivering services more innovatively and continuing to promote the city to businesses.