Devon’s budget set to be in the black

Posted on: 8 March 2017

Devon County Council is set to record a balanced budget for the 26th year in succession.

County Treasurer Mary Davis said the budget was projected to be in surplus when the financial year ended in four weeks time.

But she warned:

“Caution should be taken when looking at this position as there is still time for storm events and winter emergencies to occur.”

Mrs Davis told the Cabinet today that there was likely to be an overspend in adult social care as a result of increased costs in residential and nursing homes and a rise in demand.

The number of packages of care which had been provided for older people and those with physical and learning disabilities was 451 over what had been predicted at 10,289.

School transport costs were also up across the board, she said, both for school buses and personalised transport for those with special educational needs.

But the increased costs were partly balanced out by underspending in waste services, planning and transport  and highways, as the result of a relatively benign winter.

Devon’s deputy leader and Cabinet member for finance, John Clatworthy, said he had predicted that the budget would be in surplus earlier in the year when there had been warnings about overspending.

Cllr John Clatworthy

“I said then that I would be very disappointed if there was not a significant reduction,” he said.

“The former Devon Labour leader, Saxon Spence, always used to say that things came together at the business end of the year and I have every expectation that when the outturn is announced in June it will be positive.”

2 comments on “Devon’s budget set to be in the black

  1. Baron Keith G Z Konopka says:

    Well, bully for you.

    You managed this remarkable result while still paying Otter Rotters the subsidy on which they relied to keep their services going. Now you have offered them virtually nothing and your miserly action has forced them to throw in the towel on a not for profit venture which provided employment for the disabled and which was a boon to hundreds of households in East Devon, particularly the elderly whose gardens are just about the only pleasure they have in life but, because of their age and often their age related disabilities, are not able to pop their garden waste into the boot of their car – if they have one – and toddle off to a recycle centre.

    You must be feeling extremely proud of yourselves.

    • Dear sir

      Thank you for your comments.

      To say that we have offered Community Composting Groups, including Otter Rotters, ‘virtually nothing’ is not correct.

      We are reducing the discretionary recycling credit rate we pay them from April, but the reduction will be marginal.

      This new £50 a tonne rate, which will be in effect for a year, will still be double the rate we will pay our commercial contractors under the new contract from next month for processing the same waste.

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