“Time and time again rural are disadvantaged, in the local government funding formula.”
The Leader of Devon County Council is concerned about rising costs and shrinking budgets:
Devon County Council leader John Hart has warned ‘deep cuts to Devon’s vital local services are inevitable unless the government provides more support.’
The County Councils Network has written to the Chancellor:
England’s largest councils warn that any moves to cut their budgets next year would be ‘worse than austerity’ and result in ‘devastating’ reductions to local services – with local authorities offering just the bare minimum. With the new Chancellor Jeremy Hunt reportedly asking all government departments to look for further savings, the County Councils Network (CCN) warns in a letter to the Treasury that prospect of funding reductions on top of soaring inflation would be ‘unthinkable and devastating’ for services.
New analysis from the CCN reveals that county authorities in England are grappling with £3.5bn in inflationary and demand costs this year and next – which is more than double the expected rise. Download the new CCN analysis Council Budgets 2022-24: Counting The Costs of Inflation here.
In the letter, Cllr Tim Oliver, CCN Chairman and Leader of Surrey County Council says that the Treasury should be under ‘no illusions on what the impact will be on local services’.
The Rural Services Network is looking to ‘new leadership’, declares the Chief Executive Designate of RSN:
As we prepare again at the RSN to write to the new group of Ministers, setting out the case for rural and explaining yet again how rural have been historically underfunded by successive governments, I wonder what will be different this time…
Turning to the new Prime Minister, he certainly should understand the issues as he represents a very rural constituency, furthermore I get the impression he will make decisions based on evidence. I am slightly more hopeful that he may see the evidence that time and time again rural are disadvantaged, in the local government funding formula, in the way that allocations are made through the Green Book process, through the way that the Levelling Up White Paper uses metrics that disadvantage rural areas to know that he has to take action to ensure that our rural areas are treated fairly and not left behind.