Budget commits millions for Vale communities
- £18.8 million over four years on leisure for Wantage and Grove
- £1.3million for the replacement of Abbey Meadow outdoor pool
- £150,000 to support the new local plan and transport feasibility studies
On Wednesday 15 February, Vale of White Horse District Council set its budget for 2017/18 with millions pledged to support local communities across the district.
Up to £18.8million is being made available over the next four years for a new leisure centre to serve Wantage and Grove, and the replacement of the outdoor swimming pool in Abingdon has been given the go-ahead with £1.3million.
More than £200,000 in grants will be available to support community projects, such as improvements to village halls and providing new sports areas.
A further £100,000 will support the delivery of the Vale Local Plan Part Two, with £50,000 for feasibility studies on transport schemes to support the new housing in the district.
Following a successful trial in 2016, the council is allocating £80,000 per year to carry out a deep cleanse of the district to ensure public areas are as clean and tidy as possible. The council will also continue to pay £25,000 per year for the next three years to ensure grass verges in urban areas can be cut at least once a year.
The council is committed to safeguarding services across the district. However, with the continued reduction in funding from government, in order to maintain excellent services for residents, the council has increased council tax by 4.3 per cent this year. From April a Band D household will pay £121.69 for services provided by the district council for 2017/18, an increase of just £5 from 2016/17.
Cllr Matthew Barber, Leader of Vale of White Horse District Council, said: “The Vale remains one of the cheapest and most efficient council tax areas in the country. Our 2017/18 budget focuses on supporting communities across the district, including delivering new and improved leisure facilities. The new leisure centre between Wantage and Grove is a vital facility for local residents, while funding for the Abbey Meadow pool will ensure people can enjoy outdoor swimming for many years to come.”