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Council Tax Freeze

Budget 2021-22

Residents will have more money to spend on supporting the local economy after councillors reversed their plans to increase council tax.

Having initially proposed a 1.99% increase on its share of the council tax bill, the Council has opted to freeze its charge at a time when residents are struggling to meet the rising cost of living.

The move comes as the income the council receives from business rates is higher than anticipated, meaning it could make the change without impacting on services and maintain its plans to invest £8 million in the borough.

Councillor Paul Foster, Leader of South Ribble Borough Council, said "We've always said that we will only put council tax up when we have to, not because we can.

"We all know the pressures residents are facing with household bills going up, and feedback in the consultation about the budget was that people did not want to see a council tax increase.

"We've had some very late information through from the Government that means we will be receiving more from business rates, so this allows us to freeze council tax without affecting our funding going forward.

"It's good news because we are able to do our bit to help residents and the increase in business rate income is down to the growth in the local economy, which is a really good sign as we come out of the pandemic."

Alongside the council tax freeze the authority is pledging more than £8 million to go towards creating affordable homes for local people, improving our parks and open spaces, and supporting businesses - with more funding also being made available for community groups and sports clubs that have been affected by the pandemic.

In setting out its plans during what continues to be one of the most challenging environments for local authorities, the Council believes its transformation of how it operates and good financial management mean it can support local communities when they need it the most.

"Our ability to freeze council tax and invest one of the largest sums of money in services for some time is undoubtedly down to the strong leadership at the council and good financial management," said Councillor Foster.

"This is what you get when you have a council delivering for local residents and we are also pledging to freeze council tax next year too.

"This budget means each and every part of the borough will see investment in the local area to bolster that community spirit and pride that we have all felt even more strongly as we have supported each other through the pandemic."

The proposals for investment include:

  • £2.4 million to improve parks and open spaces, with a further £200,000 for smaller recreation areas and play areas
  • £3.1 million to create more affordable homes for local people, with work about to start on the McKenzie Arms site in Bamber Bridge
  • £1.6 million to improve the leisure centres, which have been brought back under the council's control, and have seen an increase in memberships
  • £200,000 for businesses to help them grow as we come out of the pandemic
  • £30,000 to help residents celebrate the Queen's Jubilee - this is alongside the Music in the Park and Leyland Festival events planned for June
  • £200,000 to target fly tipping hotspots and clean up areas of the borough
  • £200,000 in community boost support funding that will see projects delivered locally by the community hubs across all parts of the borough
  • £200,000 for sports clubs and community groups that have helped many people keep going through the pandemic but have been severely affected by the lockdowns
  • £200,000 to support high quality employment by supporting apprenticeships and graduates to work at the council, improving service delivery and resilience


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