Lack of money is a missed opportunity’

SOUTH Cambridgeshire District Council (SCDC) said it was disappointed with the amount of money it had been allocated by the Government to pay for services. Under proposals made by the Department for Communities and Local Government, SCDC would receive an

SOUTH Cambridgeshire District Council (SCDC) said it was disappointed with the amount of money it had been allocated by the Government to pay for services.

Under proposals made by the Department for Communities and Local Government, SCDC would receive an additional £459,000 funding in 2007/08 - bringing the total proposed grant to £7.562million.

Councillors believed this increase of 6.5 per cent was just not enough to properly fund public services.

Leader of SCDC, Councillor Dr David Bard, said: "Although we were expecting this amount of funding and have taken it into account in our financial planning, this settlement is disappointing because it is a missed opportunity to fund public services properly."

SCDC said the increase was small when measured against the extra requirements and services needed for the district, and taking into account the expansion of Cambourne and the development of Northstowe.

Cllr Bard said: "Of the £459,000 additional funding, inflation and other known financial commitments already account for £400,000, leaving little room for additional expenditure.

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"We strive to provide good quality services for our residents, but need proper funding to continue doing so. This council is still coming to terms with the Government's capping decision 18 months ago which, together with efficiency and other savings necessary to balance SCDC's future financial position, has resulted in budget reductions of approximately 25 per cent over two years."

The council expects to make savings of £1.13million in 2007/08 and has already made savings of £2.6million in 2005/06 as a result of capping.

SCDC intends to press the Government for more funding.

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