Have your say on council’s budget

editorial image

People are being urged to have their say on this year’s budget as consultations draw to a close.

The council’s Cabinet is due to agree a draft budget – which includes a recommended no rise in Council Tax or parking charges - on February 12. The final decision will be taken a week later at full Council.

This follows months of detailed all-party discussions at a series of specialist budget review groups, looking at individual and specialist areas of spending.

Further reductions in government funding and increased demand for services means the council has focused on efficiencies and finding new ways of delivering services in its 2014/15 budget proposals.

Councillor Edith Bald, the Cabinet member responsible for Finance, said: “There is still time for Milton Keynes residents to have their say in the budget setting process.

“People can come in person to speak at either Cabinet or the subsequent council meeting but I would urge them not to leave it as late as that.

“On average we are facing a reduction in funding of between around 10% and 15% a year for the next five years. This is tough, make no mistake about it, but due to good financial management in recent years, and with sensible steady budget measures in place, we will keep service reductions to a minimum, whilst also making sure the most vulnerable members of the community are protected.”

Residents have until February 15 to respond to the budget consultation and can do so by visiting www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/consultations or by emailing budget@milton-keynes.gov.uk.

People can also get in touch by writing to Budget 2014, Milton Keynes Council, Civic Offices, 1 Saxon Gate East, Milton Keynes, MK9 3HG or in person at either the February 12 Cabinet meeting – starting at 7pm – or February 19 at the full Council – starting at 7.30pm. Both meetings will take place in the Council Chamber.

The budget papers in full can be viewed at www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/consultations