Council tax budget 2023-24
About the 2023-24 council budget
For more information you can read the full budget report.
Leader of Kingston Council and Portfolio Holder for Finance, Andreas Kirsch, said:
“Our budget sets out investment in delivering a greener, fairer, safer borough. We are in a stronger position than many to face the financial challenges ahead because we have put the borough’s finances in order, taken the decisive action needed and started the work to build effective community resilience. This means we can continue to focus on the key services our residents rely upon and continue the important work to transform our borough environmentally, culturally and economically.
“We know this is a difficult time for everyone and help is available for those who are on a low income or claiming certain benefits through the council tax reduction scheme.”
All local authorities are required to set an annual budget which balances the money spent on services with income generated and funding received. On 2 March 2023, Budget Council approved a budget of £161.3m that protects essential support for vulnerable adults and children, delivers on climate action and provides value for money services.
This budget sets out how the council will deliver on these commitments while meeting the financial pressures from the national economic crisis, rising demand and ongoing insufficient government funding.
Despite these pressures, the government has reduced Kingston’s central grant from £66m in 2010 to almost nothing this year. While the council receives some specific grant funding, it has to rely primarily on what it receives from council tax and business rates.
We need to focus on how we spend the money we do have, to ensure we can continue to improve the lives of the people who rely on us most.
The budget for 2023-24 includes a new £720,000 Community Resilience Fund that will support residents and community groups through the cost of living crisis, complementing the continued support from the Household Support Fund.
The council has also recently opened a new specialist dementia care home and work is underway on a new specialist autism school, due to open in September this year. There are also further plans for two more schools.
We will continue to deliver against our climate action plan, working to remove single-use plastic from its buildings, plant more trees and encourage more people to use sustainable transport through initiatives such as increasing the number of school streets in the borough and installing more electric vehicle charging points.
We’re also working on delivering more council housing, with 78 new homes being built on three small sites across the borough. And we’ll be investing in our libraries and public spaces.
Kingston’s effective financial management in recent years and clear plans for the future mean the borough is in a stronger position than many to face the tough times ahead.
You can download the council tax booklet for 2023-24 for more information. This has been posted to all households paying council tax in the borough.