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WHITCHURCH AND GANAREW GROUP PARISH COUNCIL

EXPLANATION FOR THE INCREASED PRECEPT 2019 / 2020

Prepared April 2019

Background

The appointed finance working group reviewed the estimated expenditure and income for the new financial year in September 2018 and presented their report and explanations at the October 2018 Parish Council meeting for all members to consider. Reference Parish Council minutes 9 October 2018 section 8.3 finance working group report. The Council members resolved a precept of £49,100.00 for the financial year 2019/2020.

Explanation

Over the past 5 years central government have decreased their funding to all County and Unitary Councils particularly to more rural locations such as Herefordshire. In turn Herefordshire Council have had to reduce their costs and budgets and as a result support grant schemes to assist Town and Parish Councils have been regularly reduced forcing such Councils either to fund maintenance themselves or reduce / withdraw maintenance services.

Typically Whitchurch and Ganarew Group Parish Council have appreciated a grant of some £7,000 towards maintenance for the footpaths and lengthsman road schemes which in this new financial year has been completely removed. This is in addition to lower service maintenance levels from Herefordshire Council and their contractor Balfour Beatty on such matters as grass verge cutting, ditch maintenance and general road drain maintenance which our Council has had to take into their service costs.

These are the principle reasons why the budget for 2019/2020 was set at £49,100.00. To maintain and further improve maintenance levels for this new financial year to the benefit of the Parish is estimated at £31,800.00 representing 65% of the budget. The remaining budget segments reflect general expected increased yearly costs and include a reserve of £1,000.00 for the elections (not normally in the budget) and £1,500.00 for emergency incidents. In comparison maintenance costs for this last financial year represented £24,800.00 after a grant allowance of £1,976.00. This allowance together with a previous lengthsman allowance is no longer available and all service maintenance for the Parish has to come from local Council funding.

The parish council's Finance Working Group currently consists of:

Jono Smith-Milne
Sean McInerney
Roger Smith

Keith Shilton (Clerk)

The group meets periodically throughout the year. The minutes of these meetings can be found below. The parish Financial Regulations can be viewed by clicking here.


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