Council tax rise and charges to park at parks proposed in City Hall budget
- Credit: EDP pics Â© 2007
People in Norwich may be asked to pay an extra 10p a week in council tax to City Hall this year as councillors figure out how to plug a budget shortfall of almost £2m.
And Norwich City Council, when it sets its budget next month, may start charging drivers to park in parks such as Eaton Park and Waterloo Park.
The city council says protecting Norwich through Covid-19 has meant spending more, yet it has been hit by a drop off in income from sources such as city centre parking and commercial rents.
Leaders say the full impact of Covid-19 on spending and income is still not fully known, but if no action was taken, there would be a £5.87m hole in its budget for the 12 months from April.
However, by taking just under £2m from the council's reserves and through one-off savings, that figure has been reduced to £1.94m.
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The council is proposing to increase its share of the council tax by 1.99pc.
That would add £5.36 a year to the bill which goes to City Hall and generate an annual £200,000 for the authority.
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But the council is also considering other ways to generate cash - and that could see drivers having to pay to park in council-run car parks where there are currently no charges.
The council says introducing such charges in the likes of Eaton Park and Waterloo Park could raise £50,000 a year.
Other proposals include raising the £52 annual fee for green waste collections to £55 and charge increases at cemeteries.
Paul Kendrick, cabinet member with responsibility for finance, said: “We are more conscious than ever this year of the impact of any council tax increase on Norwich residents, but it remains an important means of funding and is vital for us to continue to provide essential services.
“Despite the financial challenges, the council isn’t proposing any major service cuts next year.
"Instead, we’re adapting by generating more income and making savings and efficiencies where appropriate.
“I urge people to give their views on our savings approach and proposed council tax rise through this consultation.”