At the Council meeting on 5 March 2020, Ceredigion County Council’s service budgets for 2020/21 were approved after receiving the final settlement from Welsh Government on 25 February.
This is the best settlement for local government and the Council since 2007/08, with an increase of 4.2%. This is equivalent to an increase of £7.609m in the Council's budget.
Ellen ap Gwynn, Leader of the Council, said: "We have had to cut £45m from our budget since 2012. Despite these enormous cuts, the Council has been able to deliver all the services it delivered before the cuts were made thanks to a dedicated workforce and some very creative and innovative ways of working. It is a welcome relief that Ceredigion will not be receiving any additional cuts from Welsh Government for 2020/21. I welcome the increase in the settlement which will help us to ensure that we can continue to provide quality services for our residents."
Also, as part of the budget setting process, a 4% increase in the Council Tax rate was approved. Despite the increased settlement, a 4% Council Tax increase is the minimum increase that would result in a standstill budget and would mean that no further cuts will need to be made this year.
This means that Band D properties in Ceredigion will pay £1,364.82 of Council Tax each year. This is equivalent to an increase of approximately £1 per week.
The proposal was approved after the Cabinet of Ceredigion County Council recommended the increase in order to ensure that there are no further cuts to council services in the next financial year.
Councillor Gareth Lloyd, Cabinet member with responsibility for Finance and Public Protection, said: "Council Tax and business rates only make up about 29% of the council's budget. We understand that raising council tax is unpopular but this increase in Council Tax will help to alleviate the increasing pressure placed on the budgets of different services."
A specific formula is applied by Welsh Government to calculate the funding allocated to each Council.