Fairer future budget principles

The council agreed a number of "Fairer Future budget principles", which will underpin the council’s budget decisions and seek to limit the impact of budget cuts on the most vulnerable.

Our budget principles are:

  • we'll keep any Council Tax increase at or below inflation and take into consideration the wider impact of austerity measures on residents and public services in Southwark
  • we'll be responsible guardians of public finances and plan ahead by developing a three year balanced budget supported by prudent use of reserves

To achieve this:

  • we'll spend money as if it were coming from our own pocket; we'll put value for money at the heart of this budget, taking every opportunity to modernise and transform working practises and to make the council more efficient
  • we'll continue to find alternative ways of providing services more efficiently and effectively by working jointly with partner organisations such as the health sector, the voluntary sector, local businesses and other local authorities
  • we'll seek to generate additional income by reviewing fees, charges and contributions and seeking further opportunities to provide commercial services; this may include introducing charges for some discretionary services that are currently free
  • some of our current services may stop; many will have to be delivered differently or reduced
  • we'll be open, honest and accountable
    • we'll build on the outcomes of budget consultations conducted over the last five years, reflecting the priorities of our residents and stakeholders as we develop proposals
    • we'll conduct ongoing consultation on the tough choices we must make and be transparent with any specific group, groups of users or staff who may be affected by any cut, reduction or significant change in service provision as soon as possible and explore with them other ways to provide the service
    • we'll conduct an equalities impact assessment for our budget proposals
  • a reduced budget will inevitably mean that the size and composition of our workforce will change; we'll treat our staff with respect, do all we can to retain staff through redeployment and retraining (to minimise compulsory redundancies) and will assist staff leaving the council

At a time of unprecedented cuts imposed by central government, the budget will continue to prioritise the promises we made in the Fairer Future council plan and will seek to protect services for the most vulnerable.

Page last updated: 08 August 2017