Government confirms final Local Government Finance Settlement 2016/17
The Government has now confirmed its final Local Government finance settlement for 2016/17 with some minor changes to the provisional settlement. In the provisional settlement, Cornwall Council lost a further £6m in funding with some slight-of-hand moving of rural funding into urban areas. Details HERE.
In what could be seen as the Government realising its error, it has increase the pot of money to the Rural Services Delivery Grant (RSG) by £91m over the periods of 2016/17 and 2017/18. For Cornwall Council this equates to a one-off increase in funding of £2.945m in 2016/17 and £1.460m in 2017/18. Allocations for 2018/19 and 2019/20 remain as per the provisional settlement.
Whilst I welcome this slight change of heart, it still means Cornwall Council is still down roughly £1.4m from the previous budget.
Furthermore, the New Home Bonus nationally has seen an increase to the final New Homes Bonus allocations increasing the total amount to £1.462bn. This has resulted in a small reduction to the returned New Homes Bonus adjustment grant to a number of authorities.
The bad news is Cornwall Council’s overall NHB allocation reduces by £0.011m in both 2016/17 and 2017/18 and £0.007m in both 2018/19 and 2019/20 compared to the provisional settlement allocations.
Most of the other changes in the final settlement impact on District Council’s apart from the Government will consult on allowing well-performing planning departments to increase their fees in line with inflation at the most, providing that revenue reduces the cross subsidy that the planning function currently gets from Council Tax payers.