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Gloucestershire Business News

Gloucestershire looks at £480m council budget

Gloucestershire County Council's cabinet will discuss a draft 2012-22 budget of more than £480million - a net increase of more than £12million - when it meets next Wednesday.

The budget will include almost £10million to protect the county's vulnerable children in the wake of an Often report outlining progress following an "inadequate' rating for children's services three years ago.

There is a more than £65million of capital investment for schools and children's services with a further £67million for highways while the council has identified £7.6million of savings for next year, helping to meet increased demand and costs.

The draft budget proposes raise in the region of £6million through a 1.99 per cent increase in Council Tax, alongside a proposal to apply the national social care precept at 2.76 per cent to raise an additional £8.6million.

The proposals would result in about a £5 monthly increase for the average Band D taxpayer.

Council leader Councillor Mark Hawthorne said: "As we work to defeat coronavirus, the county council must also keep an eye on the future.

"This budget invests in Gloucestershire's future, with more support for children and young people, investment to deliver our zero carbon commitments, and infrastructure to support future homes and jobs.

"I am proud we are doing that while still delivering one of the lowest Council Tax levels of any county council in England."

Among the key investments planned for the next financial year are:

  • £1million to make new school buildings carbon neutral
  • £9.2million for a new special school
  • £15million for the new secondary school in Cheltenham
  • £11million for a new primary school in Bishop's Cleeve
  • £8.1m for improvements to the condition of school buildings and facilities
  • £4.9m towards delivery of the Gloucester South West Bypass
  • £3m towards the £11.6m Cheltenham to Gloucester cycle route
  • £11.3m towards M5 Junction 10
  • £2.7m investment in new and improved life-saving equipment for Gloucestershire Fire & Rescue Service
  • £1.8m to deliver broadband across the county

Subject to cabinet approval, a consultation on the draft budget will run from December 18-January 15.

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