Cirencester town council's estimated spends top £1million

ESTIMATED spending figures for Cirencester Town Council have pushed over the £1million mark for the first time.

The town council has defended a spending increase of £72,360 in next year’s budget plans as necessary for "taking up the slack" due to cutbacks at Cotswold District Council and Gloucestershire County Council.

Top spends revealed at this month’s town council meeting, included £391,500 on salaries, £38,000 on the town centre regeneration scheme and £33,000 on community safety, including CCTV.

Spends on public areas and highways is also set to double to £15,000 from next financial year to help improve the town’s verges and roundabouts.

Now, residents are invited by the council to scrutinise the estimated spending figures in full and provide feedback before the final budget is agreed in January.

At last week’s meeting, Cllr John Burgess (Con, Beeches Ward) said the figures were "frightening."

"This is the first time in history it will exceed £1m," he said. "We can’t afford this constant hike in expenditure."

But Cllr Lee Searles (Lib Dem, Park Ward) said: "Cirencester is growing by the day owing to the district council placing most of its housing needs in the town, so I think you had better get used to it."

As part of the estimated budget, spending is set to rise from £927,940 this financial year to £1,000,300 next financial year, while income is also set to rise from £209,560 this year to £245,000 next year.

If approved, the total potential increase to taxpayers would be £36,920.

Speaking after the meeting, Cirencester’s deputy mayor Cllr Joe Harris (Lib Dem, Park Ward) said the increase was vital for sustaining local services and amounted to a "few pence" per person over the year.

"A lot of funding for frontline services that people need such as the youth services have been cut by the government, county council and district council, so we’ve decided to plug that gap.

"The district council has frozen council tax and it’s an unsustainable model because people have to pay for this through sky high parking and toilet charges.

"We hope the small increases we are proposing, which will go on projects like the market place scheme, will have a long-term economic impact on the town."

CDC leader Lynden Stowe said Cllr Harris was "speaking political hogwash" in blaming the district council for CTC's estimated budget increase.

"Given the current economic crisis, it's absolutely the right thing to freeze council tax until at least 2016. It's up to the town council to set their own budgets and nothing to do with CDC."

To see and comment on the town council's draft budget, visit cirencester.gov.uk, email info@cirencester.gov.uk or drop in to the town council offices at Bingham House, Dyer Street, Cirencester.

A GLANCE AT THE ESTIMATED 2013/14 BUDGET

Sector: Expenditure (Income)

  • Staff salaries: £391,500 (£0)
  • Staff pension and ill health insurance: £27,600 (£0)
  • Town centre regeneration scheme: £38,000 (£0)
  • Community safety, including CCTV: £55,000 (£22,000)
  • Cirencester Development Partnership: £30,000 (£7,500)
  • Christmas market:  £72,000 (£62,000)
  • Christmas lights: £12,000 (£0)
  • Children and young people: £19,000 (£0)
  • Public realm and highways: £15,000 (£0)

Comments (17)

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12:15pm Fri 30 Nov 12

StephanieP says...

Typical Lib Dem hypocrisy. They moan about the financial effectiveness at CDC, but fail to budget properly at Town Council level. Nearly £1/2 million for salaries and pensions? What is going on?
Typical Lib Dem hypocrisy. They moan about the financial effectiveness at CDC, but fail to budget properly at Town Council level. Nearly £1/2 million for salaries and pensions? What is going on? StephanieP

1:45pm Fri 30 Nov 12

Iansky says...

It would be nice to see a breakdown of the salaries and who get's what - I imagine there are some nice paydays coupled with generous expenses!
It would be nice to see a breakdown of the salaries and who get's what - I imagine there are some nice paydays coupled with generous expenses! Iansky

8:59pm Fri 30 Nov 12

Olly Cromwell says...

Nice to see Lynden the liability and his lapdog (StephP) come out of their cozy bunker to take a pop at Councillors on CTC who take NO allowances.

Is that the same Lynden who had to confess earlier in the year to lining his own pocket with £37,000 of business from the Water Park area when mixing Tory politics with business?

Why, so it is.
Nice to see Lynden the liability and his lapdog (StephP) come out of their cozy bunker to take a pop at Councillors on CTC who take NO allowances. Is that the same Lynden who had to confess earlier in the year to lining his own pocket with £37,000 of business from the Water Park area when mixing Tory politics with business? Why, so it is. Olly Cromwell

11:43am Sat 1 Dec 12

StephanieP says...

Pot, kettle? Is Olly the Wally a Lib Dem Lap Dog?
Pot, kettle? Is Olly the Wally a Lib Dem Lap Dog? StephanieP

7:30pm Sun 2 Dec 12

Union Man says...

So who is Lansky? Lynden or Sue?
I'm confused, and who is Olly Cromwell, is he also Crispin Mount and Dazzer but when Parish Rate is more than the District Rate then something is badly wrong, and that is typical Lib Dem head in the sand "Lackof," Policy keeping everything jogging along as if the recession never happened, as if New Labour never beat boring John Major's boring but rock solid fiscal policy in favour of Gordon Brown;s
Spend Spend Spend policy, and as if many of us aren't struggling to pay our bills. Maybe we should tighten our belts again, give up some little luxuries and maybe Cirencester Liberal Democrats are the luxury we can no longer afford.
So who is Lansky? Lynden or Sue? I'm confused, and who is Olly Cromwell, is he also Crispin Mount and Dazzer but when Parish Rate is more than the District Rate then something is badly wrong, and that is typical Lib Dem head in the sand "Lackof," Policy keeping everything jogging along as if the recession never happened, as if New Labour never beat boring John Major's boring but rock solid fiscal policy in favour of Gordon Brown;s Spend Spend Spend policy, and as if many of us aren't struggling to pay our bills. Maybe we should tighten our belts again, give up some little luxuries and maybe Cirencester Liberal Democrats are the luxury we can no longer afford. Union Man

11:40am Mon 3 Dec 12

Susie Clark says...

The link between Cirencester Town Council expenditure and the Water Park baffles me, Olly. Talk about a one issue party - can you not think about anything else ?
What is clear is that we have one council,Cirencester, ( Lib Dem controlled ) that puts up its taxes and another, CDC , ( Conservative controlled ) that doesn't. I think it's called the difference between poor and good financial management.
The link between Cirencester Town Council expenditure and the Water Park baffles me, Olly. Talk about a one issue party - can you not think about anything else ? What is clear is that we have one council,Cirencester, ( Lib Dem controlled ) that puts up its taxes and another, CDC , ( Conservative controlled ) that doesn't. I think it's called the difference between poor and good financial management. Susie Clark

5:29pm Mon 3 Dec 12

esse quam viderie says...

The difference between the financing of CDC and CTC, Susie, is that the Town Council has to raise it's own money whereas the District Council gets a multi million grant from central government and still takes £2m from Cirencester's car parks.
The difference between the financing of CDC and CTC, Susie, is that the Town Council has to raise it's own money whereas the District Council gets a multi million grant from central government and still takes £2m from Cirencester's car parks. esse quam viderie

7:42pm Mon 3 Dec 12

Olly Cromwell says...

It's the cost of 2 hrs in a Cirencester CDC car park!

It restores the CCTV coverage in the Town which Cllr Stowe and Cllr Burgess (both Tory Cabinet members on CDC) cut behind closed doors leaving the public unprotected and unawares.

Unfortunately for you Susie, everything is linked to or coloured by the Water Park scandal, so I was just wondering whether all those business rates have yet been collected by Lynden & Co. from that mate of his?...you'll know who.
It's the cost of 2 hrs in a Cirencester CDC car park! It restores the CCTV coverage in the Town which Cllr Stowe and Cllr Burgess (both Tory Cabinet members on CDC) cut behind closed doors leaving the public unprotected and unawares. Unfortunately for you Susie, everything is linked to or coloured by the Water Park scandal, so I was just wondering whether all those business rates have yet been collected by Lynden & Co. from that mate of his?...you'll know who. Olly Cromwell

9:12am Tue 4 Dec 12

dopey1 says...

The outcome of the CDC investigation into non payment of rates by a business in the Water Park seems to have passed us by.
The outcome of the CDC investigation into non payment of rates by a business in the Water Park seems to have passed us by. dopey1

1:39pm Tue 4 Dec 12

Union Man says...

They could scrap the plan to ruin the Market place, a change no one except a few lib Dem die hards wants, and keep the Council Tax virtually the same.
Scrap the Christmas market we all loathe and detest and keep the tax the same and put £ 30 K back into reserves, or scrap both and put the Tax down and put some back into reserves.
Its not Rocket Science.
Lib Dems are a luxury Cirencester can no longer afford.
They could scrap the plan to ruin the Market place, a change no one except a few lib Dem die hards wants, and keep the Council Tax virtually the same. Scrap the Christmas market we all loathe and detest and keep the tax the same and put £ 30 K back into reserves, or scrap both and put the Tax down and put some back into reserves. Its not Rocket Science. Lib Dems are a luxury Cirencester can no longer afford. Union Man

5:28pm Tue 4 Dec 12

MR DOBBY says...

CHRISTMAS MARKET SHOULD BE MAKING MONEY NOT COSTING US MONEY.
I WOULD BE HAPPY TO PAY EXTRA IF THE CTC PUT MONEY INTO PLAY EQUIPMENT IN CHESTERTON BUT WE HAVE TO PAY FOR IT AND PAY EXTRA TAX SO WHERES ALL THE MONEY GOING.
MARKET PLACE SHOULD BE LEFT AS IS, UNTIL IT CAN BE PAYED FOR BY OTHER MEANS.
CHRISTMAS MARKET SHOULD BE MAKING MONEY NOT COSTING US MONEY. I WOULD BE HAPPY TO PAY EXTRA IF THE CTC PUT MONEY INTO PLAY EQUIPMENT IN CHESTERTON BUT WE HAVE TO PAY FOR IT AND PAY EXTRA TAX SO WHERES ALL THE MONEY GOING. MARKET PLACE SHOULD BE LEFT AS IS, UNTIL IT CAN BE PAYED FOR BY OTHER MEANS. MR DOBBY

6:31pm Wed 5 Dec 12

Pentheus says...

It would appear that the Christmas Gnomes at CTC have been spreading blatant lies and falsehoods about a Christmas Ice Skating Rink in the Abbey Grounds........
http://www.christmas
incirencester.org.uk
/activites.html

Firstly there is no ice ! It is not an Ice rink and unless Christmas Day has been moved the whole thing closes down on the 16th of December....

You couldn't make it up could you ?
It would appear that the Christmas Gnomes at CTC have been spreading blatant lies and falsehoods about a Christmas Ice Skating Rink in the Abbey Grounds........ http://www.christmas incirencester.org.uk /activites.html Firstly there is no ice ! It is not an Ice rink and unless Christmas Day has been moved the whole thing closes down on the 16th of December.... You couldn't make it up could you ? Pentheus

6:47pm Wed 5 Dec 12

Cotswoldlakes.org.uk says...

This could have been an interesting debate about which locally important services or projects town and parish councils might support, as government funding is reduced. Instead, we have partisan jibes.

Stroud District Council have just decided to revert to a system, “..where groups of councillors from all parties will work together to make major decisions.. to more considered, balanced and higher quality decision making which will benefit the district as a whole.”

Discuss (please).

Philip Nicholas
South Cerney Parish Council
This could have been an interesting debate about which locally important services or projects town and parish councils might support, as government funding is reduced. Instead, we have partisan jibes. Stroud District Council have just decided to revert to a system, “..where groups of councillors from all parties will work together to make major decisions..[leading] to more considered, balanced and higher quality decision making which will benefit the district as a whole.” Discuss (please). Philip Nicholas South Cerney Parish Council Cotswoldlakes.org.uk

8:00pm Wed 5 Dec 12

Crispin Mount says...

StroudDC is a rainbow coalition but without the colour blue.
StroudDC is a rainbow coalition but without the colour blue. Crispin Mount

10:18pm Wed 5 Dec 12

Union Man says...

It makes no difference whether Cirencester town council has a Cabinet or Committee system, the Lib Dems dominate and decisions are made at Lib Dem HQ 14 Park Street, Cirencester and rubber stamped at Dire Street.
Stroud can't even agree a Cabinet so a reversion to a Committee style talking shop is their only way sideways as they slowly procrastinate towards a pan Gloucestershire Unitary while Costwold district continues to deliver good quality entertainment ourtesy of the Lib Dems and sensible policies courtesy of the Conservatives.
Bit like coalition Westminster really.
But do we really need the luxury of these comedians? Can we afford the Lib Dems.
No Lib Dems are a luxury we can no longer afford.
It makes no difference whether Cirencester town council has a Cabinet or Committee system, the Lib Dems dominate and decisions are made at Lib Dem HQ 14 Park Street, Cirencester and rubber stamped at Dire Street. Stroud can't even agree a Cabinet so a reversion to a Committee style talking shop is their only way sideways as they slowly procrastinate towards a pan Gloucestershire Unitary while Costwold district continues to deliver good quality entertainment ourtesy of the Lib Dems and sensible policies courtesy of the Conservatives. Bit like coalition Westminster really. But do we really need the luxury of these comedians? Can we afford the Lib Dems. No Lib Dems are a luxury we can no longer afford. Union Man

9:02pm Thu 6 Dec 12

bobirving says...

Union Man,
It's the tories that gave us the on-going whodunnit that is the Costwold Water Park that's provided Private Eye with so many column inches over the years. They're also planning a Frankenstein's monster of an incinerator over at Javelin Park.
These little problems might not happen if things were done out in the open instead behind the closed doors of the tory cabinets.
Union Man, It's the tories that gave us the on-going whodunnit that is the Costwold Water Park that's provided Private Eye with so many column inches over the years. They're also planning a Frankenstein's monster of an incinerator over at Javelin Park. These little problems might not happen if things were done out in the open instead behind the closed doors of the tory cabinets. bobirving

12:36am Fri 7 Dec 12

Union Man says...

CDC Cabinet is open to public scrutiny but the pre meeting meetings where the Tories get together and decide policy over a plate of cucumber sandwiches and a decent Chablis is not, in much the same way as the Lib Dem meetings at 14 Park Street where they decide CTC policy over a plate of cucumber sandwiches and a decent bottle of Perrier.
Never mind, CTC is going to be capped under Uncle Eric's announcement that any Parish Precept increase over 2.5% is going to be subject to a referendum.
CDC Cabinet is open to public scrutiny but the pre meeting meetings where the Tories get together and decide policy over a plate of cucumber sandwiches and a decent Chablis is not, in much the same way as the Lib Dem meetings at 14 Park Street where they decide CTC policy over a plate of cucumber sandwiches and a decent bottle of Perrier. Never mind, CTC is going to be capped under Uncle Eric's announcement that any Parish Precept increase over 2.5% is going to be subject to a referendum. Union Man

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