Councillors have approved a council tax rise of 2.99% from April in what is described as a second ‘Budget for Recovery.’
Kirklees Council’s budget includes a £4 million injection into frontline environmental services, nearly £3 million extra financial support for residents hit by increases in their cost-of-living, £4.9 million funding to accelerate regeneration in towns across Kirklees and £10 million extra for roads maintenance and repairs.
The budget was approved at a four-hour meeting at Huddersfield Town Hall on Wednesday night.
The Government has capped council tax increases at 2.99% of which 1% goes directly into social care services through the Government’s Adult Social Care Precept.
The budget equates to an increase of 63p each week for residents living in a Band A property and 94p for a Band D home.
Cabinet member for corporate services, Clr Paul Davies, said: “This budget gives a cash injection to frontline services that make a real difference to everyone’s quality of life.
“It will mean extra investment in tidying up towns and neighbourhoods, tackling fly-tipping and keeping our green spaces even safer and cleaner. It also provides the council with an additional £10 million for extra roads maintenance and repairs.
“As everyone’s cost of living increases, this budget will increase our financial support for Kirklees residents who need it most by expanding our local welfare provision.”
Clr Davies said the budget was also about the “long-term prosperity of everyone in Kirklees.”
Council leader Shabir Pandor said the council wanted to do more but needed to tackle the “economic challenges” around people’s quality of life.
He added: “With solutions from the Government not being offered, we will need to look after our own through this budget, and that is why we will have to see an increase in our council tax by 2.99%.
“One per cent of this increase is the Government’s Adult Social Care precept, because the long wait for a national solution to its funding continues. However, the long-term solution is a real concern.
“Funding adult social care in Kirklees comes at an annual cost of £108 million which is 32% of our overall budget. Something needs to change at a national level.
“Many residents also face a cost-of-living crisis this year, so we will step in with financial support for those who really need it. We will also continue our investment in transforming services for young people who are most at risk of being excluded.
“We’re a diverse borough and every community has its own unique challenges and we’re investing the money needed to tackle them in a more targeted away, working with local councillors in every ward to make sure no one is left behind.”
Clr Pandor said, due to austerity cuts, Kirklees had lost around 60p in every £1 of funding from central government, meaning a loss of £200 million from the budget since 2010.