TRAFFORD COUNCIL: Estimated budget gap of £22m looming
The council’s finance department has been working hard to find ways to plug the gaps
Trafford council is facing a budget gap in the region of £22m in the next financial year.
The authority is also expecting a £2.18m overspend in this year’s budget, thanks to pressures from the coronavirus pandemic.
The council has been placed in a difficult position with the ongoing challenges presented by the coronavirus outbreak and its finances have taken a battering.
Coun Tom Ross, executive member for finance, gave an update at this week’s executive meeting and highlighted particular areas of pressure in the authority’s children’s, places and adult care departments.
The council’s finance department has been working hard to find ways to plug the gaps and avoid cuts to services – it’s also pushed some capital spending, due to take place this year, into future budget plans to help balance the books.
The challenge the authority’s finance officers face next year will be even greater, however, with a predicted gap of around £22m to fill.
The exact amount will be dependent on how much the council is given from central government in the autumn budget.
A spokesperson for Trafford council said: “We are currently developing budget plans for 2022/23 and looking to bridge a budget gap in the region of £22m, of which a significant amount is due to the continuing effects of the pandemic.
“This is in addition to addressing an in-year budget challenge in 2021/22 where projections are currently forecasting a £2.1m overspend.”
Coun Ross said: “We are continuing to face very difficult financial conditions, while continuing to deal with the effects of the covid pandemic and leading our borough’s recovery.
“Above all, our priority will remain the protection of our front line services in order to best serve our residents, communities and businesses.”
More information is set to become available in the coming weeks, as the council’s budget proposals meeting is being held on Monday October 11.
Words: Alice Richardson, Local Demcoracy Reporter
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