Kent County Council faces tough decisions in budget crisis

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Covid-19 budget crisis

Kent County Council may be forced to cut some services as it faces a shortfall of £40-£50 million in the year 2020-21.

Additional spending of £96.6 million and a loss of income of £21 million are forecast for this financial year, both related to the Covid-19 crisis.

Central government has so far provided extra funding of £67 million, with a further £10 million to come, but this does not plug the hole in the Council’s finances.

The Council must balance the need to fund services such as children’s social care, schools, roads and support for older people, with cuts in some areas likely.

Budget consultation

Kent County Council has asked for views on how best to prioritise its spending in light of the budget crisis, before making a decision.

The four-week consultation, which launched on 13 July, can be accessed at www.kent.gov.uk/budget.

Kent County Council Budget

Pay rises

Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement pay rises for 900,000 public sector workers could signal a further burden on the already stretched budget, as pressure mounts to match the deal for council workers.

TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady called for social care workers to join the ranks of those being offered a pay rise.

“Many public sector workers, like job centre staff and local government workers, aren’t getting these rises. They deserve a decent pay settlement too.”

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