Budget and Precept for 2019/20

The Parish Council meets on the 3rd Thursday of each month, alternating between Wood Lane Community Centre and Audley Pensioners Hall.  All Parish Council meetings are open to the public, and there is a special session where comments are invited at the start of every meeting.  Future meeting dates are available on the website https://audleyparishcouncil.org/ or the 8 noticeboards.  Generally, the agenda is advertised around a week in advance of the meeting.  These meetings are advertised in the Audley Community News, social media, the Parish Council website and the 8 noticeboards placed around the Parish (Bignall End, Audley, Miles Green, Scot Hay, Wood Lane. Halmer End, Alsagers Bank).

Budget for 2019/20 and Precept Amount

As with previous years, the Parish Council’s budget consultation process for 2019/20 started at the September 2018 Parish Council meeting.  This allows members of the public 5 months to attend and input at the monthly meetings or if not to send in their comments.  The final precept (budget) was set at the end of January 2019 meeting.

Nationally the average precept is £64.05 for a Band D council tax property in the year 2018/19.  Currently this year (18/19) £55.73 per Band D is raised through the Council Tax for Audley Parish (which represents just over £1 a week).  All of which is raised and spent within the Audley Parish.  The increase in Precept for 2019/20 equates to £5.10 per year (or 10p per week) for a Band D* Council tax property.

The decision taken by the Parish Council to increase by 10 per week for next year was for the following reasons:

  1. To continue to fund the bus subsidy in order to keep the rural parish villages and town centre accessible to all who depend on public transport (mostly pensioners, youths and workers). The decision to continue was taken on 15th November 2018, following a review of the bus service, by the Parish Council.Please note the weekly daytime service is commercial and not subsidised by the Parish Council, it is only the Monday to Friday evening and weekend/bank holiday service which is subsidised by the Parish.  Retaining an early evening/weekend service, which would otherwise be removed following the County budget cut, helps to ensure the commercial daytime service is retained.  Monthly statistics are provided to the Parish Council, although the data captured is limited– the statistics show the bus is of benefit to the Parish and is well used especially the Saturday service.  Please see below sample data.
  2. To increase the depleted council reserves to allow for an adequate contingency fund for unplanned expenditure. The Parish Council has a maintenance liability for the assets in the Parish ownership (which have an insured value of £550k collectively).  Please see below list of parish owned assets.
  3. To raise funds to repair the 2 village centre car parks and to take on a 99 year lease in order to bring them under parish council control – securing them for the future of the village. Resurfacing costs of one car park is estimated to be in the region of £40k due to the drainage required.
  4. To invest in additional CCTV cameras in response to tackling the ASB issue which continues to occur throughout the year in the Parish.
  5. The Borough Council is removing its funding provided to Parish Councils referred to as Section 136 funding, therefore this represent a total loss of £10,000 per year for Audley Parish. As a result of budget cuts forced upon the Borough and County Councils, more services are falling to the Parish Council’s to pick up.

Parish owned assets:

  • 8 parish play areas which require regular maintenance, grass cutting, boundary and tree management plus ongoing investment to modernise (There is 9 if you include Queen Street which we also own and invest in eg skate board ramps, fitness equipment)
  • A Parish bowling club
  • 2 Allotment sites (consisting of over 80 allotment plots)
  • 3 wildlife areas (Leddys Field, Blue Bell Woods, Margaret’s Garden)
  • 5 Bus shelters
  • 75 parish seats (approx.)
  • 8 noticeboards
  • 2 car parks (Miles Green and Halmer End), plus a further 2 we are looking to take on in the village centre to sustain the village shops.

Bus Statistics

April 2018:
849 evening service Monday to Friday and Sunday/Bank holiday
1788 Saturday service

August 2018:
784 evening service Monday to Friday and Sunday/Bank holiday
1890 Saturday service

January 2019:
511 evening service Monday to Friday and Sunday, Bank Holiday
1894 Saturday service

February 2019:
569 evening service Monday to Friday and Sunday/Bank holiday
2138 Saturday service

Data collected by the bus company does not state at which point the passenger disembarks or the approximate age of the passenger.

Budget for 2018/19 and Precept Amount – raising funds for a new play area … Albert Street
The budget and precept amount was discussed during 19th October 17  and was confirmed at the January 2018 meeting.

Budget for 2017/18 and Precept amount – raising funds for a new play area..Halmer End
The budget for the financial year (April 2017 to March 2018) was discussed at the October, November, December and January 2017 meetings.  The precept was set at the February 2017 meeting.

Financial year 2016/17 – raising funds for a new play area..Alsager Road Audley
In April 2016 the Parish Council increased the precept to raise funds to provide new and modern play equipment at Alsager Road, Audley – one of the 8 parish owned/managed play areas.    In order to raise the much needed funds the Parish Council approved a budget at their meeting in October 2015 which saw an increase to the Precept for 2016/17.  Based on a property paying Council Tax in Band D this equated to an additional amount of £0.47 paid per week – approx. a total of £0.80p per week paid (or £41.85 per year rather than the previous year in 15/16 of £17.50 per year).  The equipment to be installed at Alsager Road was decided through consultation with local children and the four parish schools – and will be in place for Spring 2017.

We hope you agree that this will be money well spent as the Parish’s play areas are in need of upgrading over the next few years for a number of reasons.    If you have any concerns please contact the Parish Council.