COUNCIL tax is set to go up by 3.8% in Denbighshire.
But despite the council’s leader praising a higher-than-expected Welsh Government settlement, Denbighshire will plug a £10.8m funding gap with its savings.
The final decision will be put to full council, but Denbighshire’s cabinet has now agreed the draft plan.
At the cabinet meeting at Ruthin’s County Hall, Denbighshire’s leader Cllr Jason McLellan told councillors he was pleased with an increased settlement from Welsh Government of 8.2%.
This compares to the Welsh average increase of 7.9% and the increase Conwy received of just 7.3% – where council tax is estimated to go up by a huge 10%.
“I think the Welsh Government listened,” said leader Cllr Jason McLellan.
“I think they gave us a better settlement than we expected because they listened to the pressures of local government.
“They prioritised the pressures of local government, and that’s down to work by the Welsh Local Government Association who have worked tirelessly to lobby Welsh Government. I’ve seen the hard work that they’ve put in.”
In the draft report, a list of pressures amounted to £25.1m.
Included in a long list of financial pressures were £3.2m of pay increases, £2.8m of inflation costs, inflation’s impact on schools, amounting to £3.9m, and £8.1m of care-associated costs, including Real Living Wage payments to staff.
To cover all these costs, Denbighshire would have needed a Welsh Government settlement of around 14.5%.
Consequently Denbighshire has a funding gap of £10.8m.
The council plan to fill the gap by using savings in its capital savings budget, unused COVID contingency funds, and a surplus of £3.8m following a review of a pension fund, amongst other savings.