Monmouthshire County Council has agreed to freeze council tax for 2012/13. The council is one of only three local authorities in Wales which have so far committed to a standstill.
Meeting in the chamber of Cwmbran’s County Hall for the last time, the council also approved an additional £750,000 to be invested in school literacy and numeracy programmes over the next three years plus an additional £300,000 to support vulnerable children and adults.
Other key decisions included a standstill in the price of school and community meals, a clear pledge to deliver on the £80 million programme for 21st Century Schools, a continued commitment to invest in and improve the road network and a continuation in waste recycling services that have made Monmouthshire the top performer in Wales
Despite significant funding cuts from the Welsh Government, Monmouthshire County Council continues to effectively manage its finances and expects to underspend its budget in the current year. Changes to working practices, streamlining internal processes, improved debt collection and cost reduction programmes have allowed the council to recommend increases to its spending on core priorities without increasing council tax.
Cabinet member for finance, Cllr Phil Murphy said of the proposals: “The budget details an increase in spending on schools and the vulnerable and no increases in the price of school meals and the community meals service while maintaining the current council tax rates. In summation we are able to freeze council tax rates and invest more into our main priority services.”