Derbyshire County Council plans to charge you extra tax - and make more multi-million pound cuts

Derbyshire County Council says it is 'working hard' to balance its books.
Derbyshire County Council says it is 'working hard' to balance its books.

Derbyshire County Council has announced it expects to make cuts of up to £18.5million in the coming year.

The Tory-led authority has also revealed it is planning to raise council tax by either 3.99 per cent or 4.99 per cent in 2019-2020.

Council chiefs say they now want residents to take part in this survey before next year's budget is set amid 'unprecedented pressures'.

The news comes in the same week chancellor Philip Hammond used his Budget to declare that austerity was 'coming to an end'.

A council spokesperson said: "We're working hard to balance our books and it's an all year challenge as we continue to face unprecedented pressures on our budget.

"Greater demands on adult social care and services for vulnerable children, reduced Government grants, inflation and meeting the National Living Wage all present challenges.

"Over the next five years, we must make a further £70m of savings which will take the total we've saved between 2010-2022 to £327m.

"For the coming year, the savings target is forecast to be up to £18.5m. Some, but not all of the areas where we'll be saving this money, have been identified, subject to consulting with those potentially affected.

"We want to make sure the decisions we make when setting next year's budget are the right ones - and we need your help.

"Before next year's budget is set we want you to tell us which services you'd prioritise when it comes to spending the budget, and which services are less important to you.

"As well as looking at the budget as a whole, we also want to know what you think about the level of council tax you pay.

"This year we are proposing to increase the council tax by either 3.99 per cent or 4.99 per cent.

"A rise of 3.99 per cent would consist of two per cent to fund adult care services and the remaining 1.99 per cent could be used to fund other council priorities including children's services (costing an average council tax payer in a band B property an extra 76p per week/£40 per year).

"A rise of 4.99 per cent would consist of two per cent to fund adult care services and the remaining 2.99 per cent could be used to help fund other council priorities including children's services (costing an average council tax payer in a band B property an extra 95p per week/£49 per year)."

The spokesperson added: "No decisions will be made on our budget until our cabinet has considered the responses to this consultation, alongside any legal and contractual reasons why we must continue to provide particular services. We will also be looking carefully at how any proposed savings would affect the needs of different groups of people in the community.

"Our cabinet will consider firm budget proposals in January, 2019. Further consultation will then be held and Derbyshire residents will again get the chance to have their say about some individual proposals before final decisions are made."