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South Ribble residents asked for views on budget plans

Posted on - 6th February, 2022 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Politics, Preston News, South Ribble News
South Ribble Borough Council Pic: Ian Greig
South Ribble Borough Council. Pic: Ian Greig

The council are asking for the views of residents in South Ribble on the budget plans as they look to help the borough recover from the pandemic.

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Over £8 million is being pledged to go towards creating affordable homes for local people, improving our parks and open spaces, and supporting businesses.

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More funding will also be made available for community groups and sports clubs that have been affected by the pandemic.

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South Ribble Borough Council believes its transformation of how it operates and good financial management mean it can support local communities when they need it most.

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The proposals set out include:

  • £2.4 million to improve parks and open spaces, with a further £200,000 for smaller recreation areas and play areas
  • £3.1 million to create more affordable homes for local people with work about to start on the McKenzie Arms site in Bamber Bridge
  • £1.6 million to improve the leisure centres, which have been brought back under the council’s control and have seen an increase in memberships
  • £200,000 for businesses to help them grow as we come out of the pandemic
  • £30,000 to help residents celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee – this is alongside the Music in the Park and Leyland Festival events planned for June
  • £200,000 to target flytipping hotspots and clean up areas of the borough
  • £200,000 in community boost support funding that will see projects delivered locally by the community hubs across all parts of the borough
  • £200,000 for sports clubs and community groups that have helped many people keep going through the pandemic but have been severely affected by the lockdowns
  • £200,000 to support high quality employment by supporting apprenticeships and graduates to work at the council, improving service delivery and resilience

The plans do also suggest a 1.99% increase in council tax (equivalent to 9 pence per week on South Ribble Borough Council’s portion of the bill) and freezes on fees and charges.

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Councillor Paul Foster, leader of South Ribble Borough Council, said: “We’ve already set the ball rolling with major developments such as the refurbishment of Worden Hall, Leyland Town Deal and the new extra care scheme but this additional funding will put us on the front foot and go right to the heart of our communities, supporting those who have given so much during the pandemic.

“It also means each and every part of the borough will see investment in the local area to bolster that community spirit and pride that we have all felt even more strongly as we have supported each other through the pandemic.

“The factor we have to consider is that the Government is expecting us to put up council tax by 1.99% and they assume this in their calculations when distributing funding around the country – if we don’t increase it we could be penalised by receiving less funding in the future.”

The consultation will run until 10 February and can be viewed at southribble.gov.uk/consultations.

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What would like to see the council spend money on? Let us know in the comments below.

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