County Council set to leave strong financial legacy to new unitary authority

The meeting of Buckinghamshire County Council’s Cabinet on Monday 13 May considered the financial outturn statement for the Council for the year 2018/19, and heard how severe financial challenges had been overcome to present a balanced budget and secure a financial legacy for the future.

Council Leader Martin Tett set out the tough challenge that had been faced by the Council during 2018/19 in maintaining vital services within unprecedented budget constraints: “We’ve seen really substantial pressures in our statutory social care responsibilities, especially in children’s services, and there were times when it was hard to see how we’d balance the budget by the end of the year.

“But our early actions have meant that whilst some budgets have overspent, we have manged to underspend on others to balance out the overspend across the whole council. This has allowed us to come in once again on budget – and even slightly under.

“This is a major achievement. The immense pressures in social services are a national issue experienced by virtually all similar authorities. But we have managed these pressures extremely well. We are not just coming in under budget, but next year we will be rebuilding our reserves so we’re going back up to the safer level we had several years ago of just over £30 million. This puts the new unitary authority in an impressive financial position in terms of the inheritance from the County Council.

“In addition we will be able to pass on a very strong and highly professional investment portfolio, generating income not just from our substantial investment in the energy from waste plant at Greatmoor, but also from a strong and very diverse range of property investments.”

Go here to download the report and related documents, or to view the webcast: