'You Choose' and have your say on Council spending
A new public consultation and budget tracker has been launched
by Bedford Borough Council to ask residents how local taxpayers’
money should be spent in 2012/13 and beyond.
Bedford Borough Council is facing an incredibly challenging
economic climate and must make £36 million of savings in the next
four years, from an existing net budget of £129 million.
Once again Bedford Borough is one of the first local authorities
in the country to open up its budget process to get the benefit of
local views as it looks to identify the savings. For the first
time, residents will be able to use an interactive ‘Budget Tracker’
This online tool gives local residents the opportunity to put
together and submit a simplified Council budget. The tool allows
residents to have their say on where the Council should look to
increase revenues and where it should try to find savings.
The results from these submissions will then be used to help the
difficult decisions that must be made.
The Council is launching its public consultation as early as
possible to give local residents the best opportunity for their
voice to be heard.
Mayor of Bedford Borough, Dave Hodgson, said: “Last year, the
views and ideas of local residents helped ensure that the required
£16million of savings were made as fairly as possible.
“This year poses an even tougher financial challenge but I hope
residents will again take part in this full and open consultation
process as we consider the budget for the next four years.
“This year it is even easier to get involved as we have
introduced an online Budget Tracker tool for local residents. It
presents a broad view of the Council’s budget to help
residents to give their view on where they think their money should
be spent and where savings should be made, as we work together to
make the right decisions for our Borough.”
Councillor Michael Headley, Portfolio Holder for Finance, added:
“Once again we are one of the first local authorities in the
country to open a public consultation with local residents as part
of setting next year’s budget.
“It was extremely challenging to achieve a balanced budget for
this year. However, finding £36 million of savings over the next
four years is likely to be an even bigger challenge and will
require some difficult decisions to be made. It is therefore
important that we are speaking to local residents as soon as
possible so we can continue our aim of protecting front line
services as much as possible in these tough times.”
The consultation closes at 5pm on Monday, 21st November
For more information and to have your say please visit