Budget for Chelmsford called "unambitious"

Chelmsford Weekly News: Budget for Chelmsford called "unambitious" Budget for Chelmsford called "unambitious"

A BUDGET plan passed by Chelmsford Council for the next 12 months has been described as “unambitious”.

Members of the authority voted in favour of the budget put in place for the 2014/15 financial year which includes a council tax increase of £3.39.

Government funding being given to the council has been cut by £1.01million compared to last year.

Finance bosses at Chelmsford said small increase to council tax and fees services like using authority owned sports pitches will help cater the loss of grant money.

However, no Lib Dem councillors sat on the opposition side of the chamber voted in favour of the budget saying it was not come up with solutions to issues they see in the city.

Stephen Robinson, ward member for Patching Hall, said: “When I read through these papers, I was desperately looking for big ideas, but I could not see any.

“There is nothing about solving congestion problems caused by housing plans for the city or looking to build affordable homes to help young people.

“This resembles the budget of a cautious council rather than an ambitous council.”

Members of the Conservative administration refuted their opponents’ remarks with John Galley, councillor responsible for finance, saying the budget would benefit residents.

Mr Galley said: “We are here to give residents and the community of Chelmsford what they want and we carry out so many surveys that we know what our residents want and we provide it to them.

“I am confident that we have the framework in place to continue to be an excellent council that maintains it’s fantastic frontline services.”

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