Monmouthshire County Council has received confirmation from Welsh Government that it will receive an 11.2% increase in its core funding next year compared to the 9.4% average for Wales and where councils across Wales have received settlements ranging from increases of 8.4% to 11.2%. This welcomed news will allow the Council to accommodate a range of significant and immediate pressures affecting services next year and to lessen the need for the Council to draw on its comparatively limited one-off reserves to support the budget.
Councillor Richard John, Leader of Monmouthshire County Council said:
“This is a significant local government settlement from Welsh Government, which rightly recognises the extraordinary role of our local services. I am grateful to ministers for listening to us as council leaders, and for making the most of the generous allocation given to the Welsh Treasury by the UK Government. It shows what can be achieved for communities in Wales and across the UK when local, Welsh and UK governments work together. This settlement will help us to make sure our cherished essential local services can continue to support our communities when they need it.”
Councillor Phil Murphy, Cabinet Member for Resources said:
“The provisional settlement has offered a significant boost to the Council and avoid it needing to make difficult, immediate and short-term decisions that would have impacted on its frontline services. It is also pleasing to note that Welsh Government have provided indicative core revenue funding allocations for 2023/24 and 2024/25 which will allow the Council to take a more strategic approach to our medium-term financial planning.
Whilst the above average increase in settlement for the Council is very welcomed, we must still recognise that the Council remains firmly rooted to the bottom of the table for the amount of funding per capita it receives from Welsh Government, which means that the Council has to raise a significantly higher proportion of its funding from other sources compared to its counterparts.”
The Council’s draft budget proposals will be considered by its Cabinet at a meeting on the 19th January 2022 and will then be released for public consultation. Given the impact of the ongoing pandemic and the continuing restrictions in place the Council will be looking to engage with key stakeholders and the public through its website and virtual budget consultation events. Further information will be provided on the Council’s website – monmouthshire.gov.uk – and on its social media channels in the New Year.