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Decisions made at Full Council meeting – 26 February 2018

Published Tuesday 27 February 2018

The outcomes of items considered at Harborough District Council’s Full Council meeting on Monday 26 February 2018 are as follows:

Councillors approved Harborough District Council’s Corporate Plan and Corporate Delivery Plan for approval. The Corporate Plan for 2018/19 to 2020/21 is an overarching public document, published annually, that sets out the council’s vision for the district, its ambitions and priorities and how it will work with its partners and the community. It sets out the Council’s strategic objectives and how these will be implemented and measured ensures that living in, working in, and visiting the Harborough district is the best possible experience. The Corporate Plan is based on information about the area and customer feedback and identifies how the council will achieve its vision - which is "To secure a prosperous future for the people of Harborough District.".

The Corporate Delivery Plan sets out the council’s strategic activities, and what these mean for communities in the district.

Three new council priorities have been identified for 2018/19 – 2020/21 which underpin both the Corporate Plan and the Corporate Delivery Plan.

These are:

  • The Place: An enterprising, vibrant place
  • The People: A healthy, inclusive and engaged community
  • Your Council: Innovative, proactive and efficient

 

Councillors approved the introduction of a ‘Corporate Charging Policy’ to ensure a more consistent approach when setting the Council’s fees and charges, and to ensure they link with the Council’s priorities and objectives. Harborough District Council sets a number of fees and charges each year to allow a range of services to be provided.

 

Harborough District Council’s budget and spending priorities for the year ahead – as well as its share of the Council Tax – have been approved.

The Council said it is continuing to respond proactively to further reductions of nearly a quarter of a million pounds in Central Government funding in 2018/19 alongside other reductions in external funding. This is on top of £1.9million of reduced funding from Central Government since 2014/15. Despite reductions in funding, the Council plans further investment in the services which residents value and will recommend savings and income generation of more than £660,000 over the coming year. Harborough District Council is proposing an increase of 1.5 per cent for 2018/19 (£2.48 for a Band D property) for its share of Council Tax. This is still less than that paid by Harborough district residents in 2011/12 and half of the 3 per cent that the Government would allow without need for a local referendum.

Council Tax is made up of a number of charges made by separate authorities including Leicestershire County Council, Combined Fire Authority, Police and Crime Commissioner, Harborough District Council and Parish Councils. Harborough Councillors say the proposed increase in its share still represents excellent value for money with improvements planned to online services to help residents order and pay for services outside of business hours. The Council is planning major investment in the Council’s leisure assets with a new leisure centre in Market Harborough – replacing the existing building – and a refurbishment of Lutterworth Sports Centre. There will also be £500,000 for disabled facilities grants to allow people to remain in their homes and further development of much-needed housing on the Council’s vacant garage sites.  Work also continues towards an adopted Local Plan later this year which will manage future development in the district until 2031. A public consultation on the Council’s budget closed earlier this month.

 

It was agreed the Council should adopt its new Economic Development Strategy which sets out the district’s economic development priorities for the next five years. It outlines economic opportunities as well as the strengths, threats, weaknesses and the challenges the district will face.