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Councillors asked to review proposed budget for upcoming financial year 2022/23

Published Thursday 2 December, 2021
Last updated on Monday 6 December, 2021

Councillors will be asked to review Swale Borough Council’s proposed budget for 2022/23 at next week’s cabinet meeting.

Cllr Roger Truelove, leader at the council, said:

“When putting together the proposed budget for the upcoming financial year, it was important that we were clear about the financial challenges facing us and that we clearly set out how we manage our day-to-day spending.

“We continue to meet pressures from the pandemic, and some costs have inevitably risen, but our income remains static. We do not know, at this point, what kind of support is coming through from the Government, but in the current climate we must prepare for a difficult scenario.

“While we wait for clarity from the Government, we need to consider making some hard decisions about savings at this initial stage. To prepare, we’ve set up a contingency reserve of £2 million to meet any shortfall.

“In this current financial year, income losses due to the pandemic, plus extra costs, means that we are predicting an overspend of £360K. However, we anticipated this pressure and set aside a Covid Recovery Fund of over £1 million from previous balances.

“With now growing uncertainty about the pandemic, if we, and other councils, end up incurring similar costs as seen in the early lockdowns, then Government will again need to come to our aid.

“I want to stress that while there are challenges to our revenue budget for the next financial year, we have set aside funds that cannot be used for our basic budget but will continue to support the improvements we are making all over the borough.

“We will also see other developments as we access Government schemes planned to help us with recovery and resilience.”

The cabinet meeting will be held in the council chambers at Swale House on Wednesday, 8 December at 7pm.

You can view the full budget report or listen live.