Foreword by the Leader of the Labour Group
Wolverhampton, like Councils all over the country, are struggling to manage their resources in the face of continued cuts from Central Government combined with rising demand for services.
Despite these challenges, I am pleased to say that under Labour’s control the Council has been awarded the national awards for ‘Local Authority of the Year’ and ‘Most Improved Council’ in 2017. And for the fourth year running the Labour Group has set a balanced budget without the need to use any emergency reserves.
Labour’s management of the Council’s resources means that we are able to continue our successful strategy to attract investment and regenerate the city. £3.7 billion of investment is on site and planned, with good quality jobs and prosperity for local people – such as the huge Westside Scheme, new homes being built across the City, the brand new city centre market and new railway station.
Labour is having to take difficult decisions to manage the cuts to our Government grant, but wherever possible we are trying to do so without cutting essential frontline services.
Once again, the Labour Group has kept our Council Tax increase as low as possible at 3.99%, which includes the 2% precept Central Government expects councils to charge to fund adult social care.
There are continued uncertainties surrounding local government finances. Based on current forecasts, we will need to find an additional £19.5 million of cuts by 2019-2020. Cuts of this magnitude are never easy, especially as we have already made reductions of more than £200 million in the last 8 years.
Despite this, City of Wolverhampton Labour Group is determined to deliver on the priorities you have told us are important and protect essential services for our most vulnerable people.
Leader of the City of Wolverhampton Council Labour Group