Borough to miss out on £17m of Government cash
HALTON Borough Council will lose nearly £17m worth of Government grants over the next four years as cuts continue to take effect.
The Government has announced the allocation of grant funding for councils for the next financial year.
Up to 2019-20, the borough will lose nearly 30% of its funding from the Government, with a public health grant for 2017-18 to be slashed by an extra £264,000.
A council spokeswoman said that the Government has also recognised that the cost of adult and children’s social care is now ‘far higher’ than the available funding.
To meet the crisis, the borough has been given a grant worth £642,000, but it will only be paid for one year.
Halton Borough Council leader Rob Polhill said: “Government grant funding is more important in areas such as Halton which has far greater social needs and increasing demand for council services.
“At the same time as the Government is reducing Halton’s grant funding, inflation and increasing demand for council services means costs are rising.
“The council will therefore have to make budget savings of around £33m over the same period up to 2019-20, in order to balance its budget each year.”
Cllr Polhill said that by 2020, the borough will have lost £63m – or 61% – of its Government grant funding over 10 years.
The cut equates to £503 per person in Runcorn, Widnes and Hale Village.
In addition the Government will allow councils from next to add 3% rather than the current 2% as a social care precept, which was introduced last year.
The payment is an addition ● to the council tax that pays for other services.
For Halton, the extra 1% charge will generate £400,000 of additional income to help deliver services.
However, the spokeswoman said that the shortfall in Halton’s adult social care funding is estimated to be £4.5m.
Cllr Polhill added: “The announcement of the 2017-18 grant settlement merely confirmed that the severe reductions in Government grant funding for Halton will continue.ti
“The council continues to work hard to find ways of minimising the impact of these funding cuts upon essential public services and to protect the most vulnerable in our community.”
Halton will lose 30% Government grants between 2017-18