Councils grapple with budget cuts

PUBLISHED: 16:00 25 January 2013

Devon County Council’s budget reduced by 2.1 per cent.

Devon County Council’s budget has been reduced by 2.1 per cent for the next financial year.

Honiton Town Council, at a meeting last week, was advised that the county council was currently preparing its budget and a settlement figure, which it receives from the Government, for the next two years had been agreed.

Councillor Sara Randall Johnson revealed £224,472,000 was available for 2013-14 and that the figure included other grant payments.

She said: “The hand that has been dealt to Devon sees a reduction of 2.1 per cent - the national average is 1.7 per cent.”

Councillor Randall Johnson also reported that a new grant for public health was being made available to the county council.

East Devon District Council has also had its central grant from the Government slimmed down.

District councillor Phil Twiss advised that the authority was working on draft revenue and capital estimates for the budget.

He said: “Thanks to very prudent measures, East Devon District Council has run a very tight, fiscal ship.

“Unfortunately, the way things are, our central grant is being cut.”

He also explained that, pre-Christmas, the proposed budget was short by roughly £8,000 and the district council could end up with a shortfall of £1.2m.

However, he stated it would be able to “balance the books” from funds received for building new homes.

The meeting heard that EDDC’s annual turnover is £25m.

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