Spending boost planned for adult social care, children and health in Devon

County Hall

Posted on: 13 December 2017

More money will be spent on adult social care, health and children’s services next year if Devon County Council’s target budget is agreed in February.

The council’s Cabinet approved the target budget for 2018/19 today, (Wednesday).

It will have to be ratified at the Budget meeting in February.

The target budget calls for an extra £13 million to be spent on adult care and health. That’s a rise of over 6 per cent and would take the total care budget to £227.8 million.

There will also be an increase in spending for children’s services of 5.5 per cent or £6.5 million taking the total budget for children to £125.5 million.

County Treasurer Mary Davis told councillors that the Government still hadn’t confirmed what level of grant the authority would receive next year.

But, she said, a provisional announcement was expected next week.

The proposals call for the revenue budget for highways, infrastructure and waste to reduce by 2.7 per cent to take account of a number of new contracts which have generated multi-million pound efficiencies.

In all, the target revenue budget for the county for 2018/19 would be £477.391 million.

Council leader John Hart said: “Our vital health and social care services for adults continue to be under immense pressure both in Devon and nationally.

“In Devon we have some of the highest proportions of people over 65 and people over 85 in the country and they need and deserve our help and support.

“We also believe it is imperative to do the best we can for our children and young people to give them the best possible start in life.

“We have always said our priority is to protect the most vulnerable in our society and I believe this target budget will help to do that.

“We know that many people are concerned about highways and the maintenance of their local roads.

“This year we have re-negotiated a number of contracts and made considerable efficiency savings.

“We’re also working smarter and greener, for example installing LED lightbulbs in our street lighting.

“This rigorous approach to doing business means we will be able to meet the Government’s continuing austerity targets while still providing the same – or an improved – service.”

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