Monday, September 6, 2010

Financial Forecast makes grim reading

In a report to the OSP Economic Well-being, Terry Parker sets out some of the arguments surrounding the budget for next year (2011/12).

This makes some interesting reading. In the original Medium Term Plan £6.1 million of cuts were having to be made. Within the various scenarios the Government preferred option has a net increase in required savings £1.5 million. The bulk of the £7.6 million - £6.1 million - is already pencilled in. So the actual Government cuts are not behind the bulk of Tsunami of Cuts that are coming.

The report goes onto look at some of the many options.

The District average option looks at an upfront increase of 28%. This large increase wouldn't get anywhere needed to balance the budget. So there would need to be cuts of £4.9 million. That is £1.2 million less than the cuts needed under the MTP.

The slower increase option means an increase is spread over a longer time period. Instead of the £7.6 million the amount needed to be cut is £6.6 million. This act of illusion is achieved by an the Council raising an extra £1 million in Council Tax.

Reading this report I get the distinct impression HDC is trying to get a large increase through before any legislation on referendums actually comes into force. Probably because the politicians don't want to talk to the residents about the forthcoming cuts.

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