Consultation reveals public's budget priorities
A consultation into this year’s district council budget has revealed that residents are very much in favour of increasing CCTV provision, but want less money spent on the local economy and tourism promotion.
The ruling Conservative group agreed its budget during Monday's Cabinet meeting, though Full Council has yet to finally sign off on it.
Of the group’s new budget proposals, support for homelessness prevention tools was most popular, with 69 per cent naming this as their first choice, followed by support for the UBUS service and funding to facilitate the compulsory purchase of Wellesbourne Airfield.
Parts of the consultation make pleasing reading for the council, with 90 per cent of respondents believing the district council offers value for money.
63 per cent of respondents also agreed that it was important for the current level of service to be maintained, even if this meant increasing council tax by more than £5 per year.
Cllr Tony Jefferson, leader of Stratford-on-Avon District Council, said: “The results make interesting reading and support many of our initiatives. We are particularly pleased that 90% of residents think that we offer value for money.
“We are investing in a new and enhanced CCTV system and in addition are implementing a series of measures for homelessness prevention, UBUS and the potential for the Compulsory Purchase of Wellesbourne airfield have our full support.
“For a number of years we have faced continued financial pressures together with reducing funding allocations from central government and it’s good to see that residents understand and are aware of the cuts to public service funding and have an appreciation of the balancing act that councils have to do.”
The consultation exercise was based on 506 questionnaires returned from a mailing to 1,063 residents on the District Council’s Citizens’ Panel in January 2019, representing a response rate of 48.1%.