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Some of things which might be cut from this year

Powys County Council draft budget for the upcoming financial year includes cuts and reductions in service - from flagpoles to charging for blue badge holders.

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Powys County Council draft budget for the upcoming financial year includes cuts and reductions in service - from flagpoles to charging for blue badge holders.

Released this week, the Powys County Council draft budget for 2024/25 is set to be considered by the Cabinet on Tuesday 16th January.


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Alongside the headline news of a 7.5% increase in Council Tax, the budget also includes around £10.6m of 'cost reductions' - cuts and savings.

We've explored the documentation to bring you just a few of them:

Remove flagpoles from some Council Buildings - save £20,000

One of the proposed cost reductions is proposed by the Council's Property, Public Protection service which proposes "remove flag poles from some council buildings (reducing compliance budget)".

This cost reduction would see a saving of £20,000, which is assumed to be compliance related costs of upkeeping the flagpoles each year.

Introduct blue badge charging in car parks - save £100,000

Another proposed cost reduction is proposed by the Council's Highways, Transport and Recycling service which proposes to introduce charges for blue badge holders in Powys car parks. This would result in additional revenue of an estimated £100,000.

The savings also include introducing parking charges at the last remaining car parks which are currently free - which is estimated to raise them £30,000 a year.

Increase green waste collection charge by £10 and increase trade waste prices by 10% - save £174,860

Charging more for services already delivered is another way in which the County Council can 'cut' their core budget (by raising more revenue). Two more reductions include an increase in the current charge for green waste collection and increase in trade waste prices by 10%. These moves are due to raise them £156,000 and £18,860 a year respectively.

Review of Household Waste Recycling Centres to introduce charges for DIY waste removal - save £100,000

This move is expected to save the Council £100,000 by charging for DIY waste disposal alongside implementing a booking system and profit sharing agreement with the current operators, Potters Group.

Reduce grass cutting on verge maintenance from 3 cuts to 2 cuts - save £173,000

This saving is expected to save the Council £173,000 a year and will see the frequency of cuts on grass verges reduce to 2 cuts a year.

Increase secondary school meals by 10p - save £90,000

This move would generate an additional £90,000 a year hiking the price of a school dinner in high schools from £2.55 a meal to £2.65.

Cllr David Thomas, Cabinet Member for Finance and Corporate Transformation, said:

"The council, which is again developing its financial plans in an extremely challenging economic context, is facing severe financial pressures for the 2024-25 financial year and the foreseeable future.

"Powys is not alone facing a bleak financial future, local government throughout Wales is facing the same severe pressures. The Welsh Local Government Association has said that councils in Wales will be facing an estimated funding shortfall of £432m.

"Through our draft budget, we are trying to limit the impact on the delivery of front-line services as much as possible within the financial constraints the council faces but, inevitably, there will be some reductions in services or changes to how or from where services are delivered.

"In proposing the council tax increase, Cabinet has carefully considered what Powys residents can afford in light of the cost-of-living crisis, together with the ongoing need to meet increasing demand and inescapable cost pressures on vital local services upon which they rely."

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