Budget consultation responses hit record high
RESPONSES to Bridgend County Borough Council’s (BCBC) budget consultation hit a record high this year with more than 2,600 people completing surveys.
The “Shaping Bridgend’s Future” consultation closed on November 18 and asked residents questions such as how much extra council tax they would be willing to pay, which services should be cut, and which should be protected in the local authority’s budget for next year.
Speaking at a recent full council meeting, BCBC deputy leader and cabinet member for resources Hywel Williams said: “The consultation was designed so that there can be no misunderstandings over the seriousness of the situation or what the effect of inevitable budget cuts will be.
“A full analysis of the feedback and comments that we have received is currently under way and this will form the basis of a report to Cabinet next month.”
The consultation recorded the council’s highest levels of engagement and participation yet, with 2,677 completed surveys returned compared to 1,858 last year.
The council said it also saw a 102% increase in people taking part in engagement sessions, which included workshops and roadshow events, with 5,288 people involved this year compared to 2,619 people last year.
At the meeting on Wednesday, November 21, Councillor Williams said: “With the consultation available in a range of accessible formats, we undertook a full publicity programme, organised a series of public engagement stands at key locations around the county, and carried out a social media debate on Twitter and Facebook.
“We also held a series of very productive budget workshops at secondary schools and primary schools.”
“The consultation views will now be used to help inform our decisionmaking on the budget for 2019-20.”