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Town Hall budget set

Redditch Borough Council has approved its budget for the coming year.

The borough council passed a budget of £10.52m for 2022-23 at its meeting last night (Feb 21) including money to upgrade online services, and also allocated funds to improve local parks and open spaces.

It means the council’s portion of the Council Tax this year will be an average £254.15, an increase of £5 compared to last year.

Cllr Mike Rouse, Redditch Borough Council’s Portfolio Holder for Finance and Enabling, said: “The council has identified another £300,000 in savings and additional income this year, and put £59,000 towards improving access to our online services that are now used by so many people.

“The improved capital programme meanwhile puts our money where our mouth is on climate change, with £1.5m to improve and look at decarbonising the fleet of vehicles that serves Redditch. And we have also ensured that residents will continue to see improvements to their local parks and open spaces, with over £350,000 from planning gains to improve facilities at Birchfield Road, Forge Mill, Winyates, a new multi-use games area in Greenlands, and more.

“Of course, the combined effects of Covid, inflation, and uncertainty over government funding now means there’s even more work to do just to ensure the council will remain financially viable. We’ve come a long, long way on financial sustainability in Redditch over the last few years but even so, nobody should be under any illusions over the scale of the task that’s now ahead.”

Cllr Matt Dormer, Leader of Redditch Borough Council, said: “The Town Hall’s finances are more challenging than ever, plus the fact that more people are approaching us for help in these difficult times. But we’ve never shied away from a challenge, that’s what we’re here to do. And despite the challenges there’s much to be excited about. The over £16m we’ve got to regenerate Redditch under the government’s Town Deal for example is huge and that will take shape this year.”

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