Council tax precept freeze set to be agreed

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A freeze to Crawley Borough Council’s element of council tax could be agreed this week for 2015/16.

The proposed budget for the next financial year was discussed at Crawley Borough Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Commission on Monday and is set to be approved by Cabinet tonight (Wednesday February 11).

The net cost of services for 2015/16 is £14.82m funded from sources such as council tax, business rates, Revenue Support Grant, New Homes Bonus, and investment income.

Cllr Peter Lamb (Lab, Northgate), leader of Crawley Borough Council (CBC), explained how even after a 5.8 per cent reduction in the authority’s spending power they were able to generate a surplus and invest in property to produce greater returns.

Cllr Michael Jones (Lab, Bewbush) said: “We are going to have another zero increase in council tax and it seems all this with no impact on front line service provision. This is excellent particularly when we see other councils not a million miles away having to merrily slash services.”

The council’s capital programme for the next few years includes £121,000 towards replacement car parking machinery at Exchange Road and Orchard Street, £100,000 for flood attenuation works at Crawters Brook, and£480,000 towards adventure playgrounds.

The Government is offering CBC a council tax freeze grant of £71,201 for 2015/16.