£260m boost for services

COUNTY Council chiefs have earmarked £260million to bolster adult and community services next year.

The authority is also looking to increase council tax in Worcestershire by 2.5 per cent, with one per cent of the increase set to be ring fenced for adult social care services.

This increase is the equivalent to less than 68 pence per week for a band D property.

Worcestershire County Council also said millions will be spent on supporting the county’s economic recovery when it laid out its 2022 budget proposals last week.

The authority said it will have spent £80million on its response to the pandemic by the end of this financial year.

Cash next year will also be put aside for improving roads, pavements, tackling traffic congestion and investing in flood mitigation.

Council leader Simon Geraghty said: “This year has been an exceptional year for all of us.

“We recognise the difficulties that many households are facing and, because of this, we are keeping the rise in council tax next year as low as possible.

“Our plan is to invest an extra £11.5 million into tackling the growing financial demands of Worcestershire’s ageing population.

“And we are proposing to spend an additional £7.7m on improving outcomes for our children and young people.”

With the help of government grants, the authority is still forecasting a balanced budget for this year and is putting forward a balanced budget for 2022.

Budget proposals will now go for consultation before being debated next month.

Worcester – The Worcester Observer