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Council spending agreed for coming year

More than £600 million of Staffordshire County Council expenditure has been approved.

The Budget for 2023/24 will include more than £400 million to provide social care for the elderly and to support vulnerable children and young people, as well as around £100 million on school repairs and expansion, business infrastructure and highways.

Ian Parry, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Finance, said: “We are very conscious that this winter has been tough for many residents and businesses, which is why we have tried to help in several different ways.

“We have been affected by the same problems – inflation, plus heating and energy increases have added more than £25 million to our costs – but we have worked hard to present a balanced budget which keeps our costs as low as possible while spending money where it is needed most.”

In line with most other local authorities, Staffordshire County Council has approved at Full Council a 4.99 per cent council tax increase for 2023/24, comprising 2.99 per cent for general purposes and 2 per cent ringfenced for social care. That means the annual increase for a Band D property will be the equivalent of £1.34 a week.

Since 2014 the Council’s £410 million Economic Growth Programme has delivered more than 11,000 jobs and enabled more than 4,500 houses to be built.

Approved investment includes:

  • £50 million for the repair and maintenance of roads;

  • £40 million on public health projects, including diabetes-prevention, supporting good mental health in the young, and drug and alcohol addiction treatment;

  • building the major road junction to Pets at Home’s national distribution centre in Stafford, which will create 800 jobs;

  • the £3.1 million Chatterley Valley West employment site near Kidsgrove, which will create up to 1,700 jobs.

Almost two-thirds of the budget will be spent on the provision of care for young and old, including helping around 6,600 people remain independent in their homes.

Ian Parry added: “In both adult and children’s care we have implemented a range of initiatives to provide the right care in the right place at the right time as a proactive approach early is often a simpler, more effective – and less costly solution.

“However, the fact remains that we require a long term, national solution to the provision of adult social care which removes the burden from council taxpayers.”

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