Council forecasts £6.4 million budget pressures as it responds to city’s need
Published: 8 September 2021
Statement from Councillor Nicola Roulstone, Cabinet Member for Finance, Assets and Digital, following the Cabinet meeting on 8 September 2021;
“2020 was an unprecedented year for the world, and we’ve felt that locally in Derby. 2021 has been no different, and as a result, organisations and local authorities – including Derby City Council – have had to meet emerging needs following Covid 19 making it particularly difficult to plan to deliver services as they usually would.
COVID-19 has changed lots of things like the way in which services are delivered, the numbers of people needing our support and intervention, and the way we generate our income.
Recovery from the pandemic is a challenge and to address this we made financial provisions as part of our financial planning for the year. We had to ensure that we continued to support, those people in Derby who couldn’t for whatever reason support themselves, which is why we invested an additional £12million into People’s Services. We also knew that the economic impact of the loss in confidence in the high street and the closure of shops, hospitality and leisure sectors, would result in a loss of approximately £4million in income.
In responding to the needs of the city, we are forecasting an overspend of £6.4 million for the current financial year. This overspend is particularly in those services where we are providing support and safeguarding children and young people. This is happening across the UK and we’re sadly no exception.
The forecast position is reflective of the extraordinary year we’ve had – but there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Looking forward, we are seeing the bounce-back of our economy, local events and regeneration schemes, as well as the return of the day-to-day footfall within the city. National insights suggest that our income will return to 90% by end of the year - which will be fantastic for the city.
It’s extremely important that we act now to protect the future finances of the Council and we have mitigation plans in place across the board.
As a Council and a corporate parent, it’s our duty to review and work with children and families to be stronger and more resilient. We’ll be continuing to reduce our costs throughout 2021/22, as well as working with LGA to lobby Government to help resolve the funding difficulties for social care, which is an issue nationally too.
Even with the pressures we’re currently facing, we’re committed to providing the best service we can for Derby residents.”