Corwnall Council is asking for residents’ views on two important matters – the Cornwall Coucnil budget for the next few years, and the Government’s housing plans, which will see thousands of new homes built in Cornwall in the next decade.#
Council draft budget for 2021/22
Cornwall Council is consulting about its draft budget for 2021/22, aiming to save £58m over the next four years, to counteract a reduced income from central government, and increased spending due to COVID-19.
You can read more about the proposals on the Lets Talk Cornwall website, with links to the draft budget proposals discussed by the Cabinet on 16 September, and have your say in a short questionnaire.
The main proposals, copied from the Council’s website, include:
- Continuing to develop and implement plans for savings and generating income that were identified in previous years and consult on these as required.
- Increasing council tax to help cover the costs of increasing demand and reduce the need to make service reductions. We are proposing to increase council tax by the maximum increase we are allowed by Government without having to hold a referendum (currently 1.99%).
- Reducing the size of our organisation and our staffing costs, including through vacancy management, a targeted Voluntary Severance Scheme and a pay review
- Driving down the costs of our contracts with external providers*
- Redesigning our organisation, including by reducing the layers of management and making more use of automation, to create a leaner and more efficient organisation
- Redesigning our services to be high performing and lower cost, with a customer centric approach delivering better outcomes for residents.
- Changing the way we work, including through formalised flexible working arrangements (ie working from home) to reduce the number of offices and buildings we need to maintain.
- Making investments that help deliver our priorities while generating income to help support our services.
- Continuing to lobby central Government for the funding, powers and flexibility to secure Cornwall’s future.
* This will affect the contracts that the Council holds with voluntary sector contractors, and Cornwall VSF is working closely with them in order to ensure that the best possible outcomes occur for the sector, and especially for the people that we support across Cornwall.
Make sure your views are known via the Lets Talk Cornwall website, or download the paper copy of the questionnaire here:
This consultation closes on 14 December, and other opportunities will be available to give feedback, including via the Forum sections of hte Lets Talk Cornwall website, and other methods.
Residents are being asked to help the Council and have their say urgently before 1 October on new Government planning rules which will set a requirement of 4,000 new houses to be built across Cornwall every year.
The proposals for new planning laws, designed to “build more homes, more quickly” in the UK would see an extra 12,500 new houses being built in Cornwall in the next ten years in addition to the current plans – the equivalent of a town roughly twice the size of Bodmin – without time to plan for new growth in the right places there are fears this will inevitably result in poor quality and unplanned speculative development coming forward.
Affordable home provision could fall significantly under the new rules. This is because of proposed short-term changes that mean developers will not have to provide any affordable housing on sites of less than 40/50 homes. This could mean a loss of 300 affordable homes a year for Cornwall’s residents.