Town council has ‘pegged’ budget

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BUDGET conscious Garstang town councillors have agreed to peg the authority’s parish precept next year.

The move means there will be no increase in the amount householders pay towards the running of the council in the financial year 2012/13.

Town clerk Edwina Parry explained the decision had been made for several reasons, including the current economic climate and prudent budgeting in previous years.

Savings have been made in several areas, including the cutting of annual contributions to a community centre issues fund and on expenditure for the mayor making ceremony.

Among planned additional expenditure will be £250 for a new youth panel, which is being organised by Coun Lynn Harter.

Mrs Parry, as town clerk, will see an increase in her salary to reflect extra hours, as will the town’s lengthsman, Martyn Rossall, who will also be working extra hours.

Deputy mayor Coun Sandra Perkins said the council was acting responsibly in the current economic climate, just as Garstang residents were with their household budgets.

The council’s books show it has £40,000 in general reserves and £16,000 in legal reserves. The town precept, which is added on to the Wyre Council tax bill, is currently £30.11p for the average Band D household. With no increase next year it will remain the same.

The precept will bring in £56,650 to the town council’s coffers.

l Wyre Council is also hoping for a zero increase in the next financial year, but as the council tax is made up of separate bills from various authorities, including the county council and the fire and police authorities who have yet to set their budgets, it is not yet known what the overall increase, if any, will be in the council tax for 2012/13.