Milton Keynes Budget 2020/21
Much of where we spend the council budget is seen by a small proportion of local people. Around two thirds goes into care and support for vulnerable adults and children – complex, essential services delivered by professionals at the council and beyond.
We do this kind of collaboration very well in Milton Keynes: for instance we were recently ranked no1 of all councils for how we help people in need of social care return home from hospital.
Other activity is more visible, from new libraries that are much valued by communities, to a big push on fly-tipping where we’ve installed CCTV cameras in hotspots to catch offenders in the act. We’re planning to fund two schools-based police officers who will offer advice to students as well as helping to prevent incidents. We have an ambitious plan to make Milton Keynes carbon negative by 2050, and to be known as one of the greenest cities in the world.
Setting the budget
We think about what’s needed to maintain and improve services as we set the council budget for the year ahead. It’s very challenging: demand for our help is high, and we’ve had to make more than £152m in cuts since 2011.
To help balance the budget, for many years we’ve made prudent financial decisions, renegotiated contracts, and invested where we knew we’d reap benefits in the longer term. For instance we no longer put black sack waste into landfill, as we have our own plant that turns waste into energy for the national grid, and we’re the first council to use electric cars for our social care teams.
Our financially stable position has helped protect many of the 250 services you value, such as:
- our libraries and children’s centres remain open
- we’ve kept our weekly bin collections
- our social care services are some of the best in the country
- we’ve more than halved rough sleeping
- we’re investing £165m improving council homes
- we’re investing in our city centre with projects like a new university.
A ‘Green and Clean’ budget for MK
Our draft budget this year is focused on tackling the climate crisis and getting the basics right.
Our proposals include:
- Plans to introduce a new low cost public transport scheme for 16 – 21 year olds;
- Proposals to plant 2,000 new trees, create new woodland and replace diseased and dangerous trees;
- Funding to create wildlife corridors, green roofs and to support recommendations from a city-wide Climate Change Task Force.
- Over £1m to improve the city centre;
- Extra funding for cleaning litter hotspots, tackling fly-tipping and clearing overgrown weeds;
- £4m extra money for homelessness;
- More cash for fixing potholes and a new resurfacing scheme for redways;
- New funding to tackle anti-social behaviour, more CCTV and combat knife crime;
- Extending the summer free school meals programme;
- Long-term investment in children’s mental health.
Unfortunately we still have to make £6m in cuts to our annual budget and therefore we are proposing to:
- Increase in Council Tax by 3.49%, below the 4% the government wants councils to apply;
- Make savings totalling £6m in efficiencies and pre-planned spending reductions.
We want to hear from you
Click to read our draft budget proposals. These proposals and others will form part of our overall spending plans for next financial year, and we are consulting on any changes you might like to see until February.
In particular we would like to hear your views on:
- Do you agree with limiting the Council Tax rise to 3.49%, below the 4% the government wants councils to apply?
- Do you agree or disagree with any of the investment proposals?
- Are there any services or priorities you believe are not covered by the proposals?
If you’d like to give feedback on the proposals, please email email@example.com by 4 February. Council will receive the proposals on 26 February 2020.
How else can residents help?
Dealing with contamination in the recycling we collect is very costly, so please put waste and recycling in the right sack.
Fly-tipping causes us significant issues, so we ask citizens to take unwanted items to a Household Waste Recycling Centre or use our bulky waste collection service.
Last Updated: 8 January 2020