Issue - meetings

Warwickshire County Council Budget 2021/22

Meeting: 08/02/2021 - County Council (Item 2)

2 2021/22 Budget and 2021-26 Medium Term Financial Strategy pdf icon PDF 365 KB

This report seeks Council approval for the 2021/22 Budget and authorisation for work to continue on ensuring that the 2021-26 Medium Term Financial Strategy is aligned with and supports the delivery of the Council’s ambitions.

Additional documents:


Councillor Peter Butlin (Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Finance and Property) introduced the item by thanking Virginia Rennie and Andy Felton for their assistance and hard work in developing the budget. He then proceeded to set out the Conservative Group’s budget proposals as contained in the appendix to the published report. In doing so he emphasised the following points.


  • The 2020/21 budget and Medium -Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) were agreed prior to the Pandemic when the Council’s reserves and overall budget were in a healthy condition. Since March 2020 much has changed. The Council has lost three Councillors who are greatly missed, staff have transferred to home working, a shielding programme has been developed and delivered, additional support has been provided to care homes, PPE has been required to be sourced, food vouchers have been delivered to vulnerable children, laptops have been sourced and distributed to assist with children’s education and the wellbeing of the Council’s own staff has been managed.
  • The challenges presented to Warwickshire have been significant. Unemployment levels have risen from 2% to 5%.  Income levels have fallen and costs risen.
  • The Autumn Settlement was delivered on a one-year basis when a three year settlement would have enhanced financial planning.
  • The Council continues to be prudent, assessing risks and reviewing the MTFS on an annual basis.
  • The Pandemic has resulted in delays to the Local Government Review, Fair Funding Review, Social Care reform and the review of business rates.
  • Flexibility around financial management will be required to react to the Pandemic and its aftermath.
  • The key word to focus on is “recovery”. The evolving Warwickshire Property and Development Company along with the Warwickshire Recovery and Investment Fund are expected to assist with this.
  • A series of funds are to be established. These include a Preventing Vulnerability Investment Fund, a Climate Change Fund and a Place Shaping and Economic Growth Fund.
  • It is proposed that Council Tax is raised by 2.99%
  • There is a need to optimise the use of the Council’s estate.
  • The high needs block is currently exceeding the funding being made available to it. A new facility is being developed at Exhall and high needs hubs are being developed around the county.
  • Reserves will need to be managed carefully with an element of them being used to support recovery. Upskilling of the workforce will be required as will initiative to assist school leavers in finding work.
  • Mental health is a major issue for young and old. Lockdown has had a negative impact and there is a growing need to help residents who are experiencing problems.
  • The value of the County’s country parks is recognised. Future developments for these will include active travel initiatives, and youth provision as well as music and theatre events.
  • Road safety is importance. The wider use of 20mph speed limits is being considered.
  • A review of household waste recycling centres is to be undertaken.


In summary, Councillor Peter Butlin recognised that the Council faces many challenges. It has a duty  ...  view the full minutes text for item 2