INTRODUCTION FROM JANE SCOTT OBE, LEADER OF WILTSHIRE COUNCIL
It is generally recognised that local authorities throughout the country have had a difficult time in preparing budgets for the immediate years ahead in view of the quite drastic cuts in funding received from central government. Although we have had to make some difficult decisions, I am pleased that our recent amalgamation of 5 councils into one has made our task so much easier than it would otherwise have been.
In fact, far from cutting any of our principal front line services, we are one of the few authorities that will invest in, rather than reduce, the services we know matter most to our residents. We have a 4 year business plan that will see an additional £34 million invested into protecting and safeguarding vulnerable adults reflecting the increasing number of our elderly residents. Over £4 million will be added to safeguard vulnerable children and another £3 million will help to improve the attainment and progress of children’s learning. Further appreciable amounts will be invested in our leisure facilities, the maintenance of our roads and the improvements in our waste collection and recycling policies. We will also invest to support the local economy.
All this considerable investment will be made possible, not only by the savings resulting from the creation of Wiltshire Council, but by additional savings of over £100 million over the 4 years by a root and branch inspection of the way we organise and deliver our services, the way we procure our needs and the number of buildings and staff we need and with no immediate increase in council tax. In other words, we will, over the next 4 years, transform the Council into a new and streamlined organisation, helping communities to help themselves but retaining and improving all the essential services our residents may need and deserve.
Reports from each of my Cabinet Members are attached which detail some of the achievements of the administration over the past year.
Jane Scott OBE
Leader, Wiltshire Council
Download the full report in PDF format
Wiltshire Council Annual Report 2010-2011