Milton Keynes council tax to rise 4.99% as councillors approve budget

    Residents in Milton Keynes will see a council tax rise of 4.99%, after the annual budget was approved at Full Council last night.

    The City Council budget for 23/24 was passed at Full Council last night (22 February).

    The Progressive Alliance which runs Milton Keynes City Council says the main focus of the budget is on 'supporting residents and ensuring core services are protected during the toughest financial crisis in a generation'.

    Residents in Milton Keynes are set to see a council tax rise of 4.99%, which the City Council states will provide additional cost-of-living support It also means that the City Council can continue to deliver core services without having to make any major cuts, unlike struggling neighbouring authorities.

    The £200m budget also includes millions of pounds in financial support, more money for local businesses and high streets, and further investment in improving the city’s roads, pathways, and landscaping. Other features of the Progressive Alliance budget include:

    • Support for hard-working homeowners through the £250,000 Mortgage Interest Rate Relief Fund
    • Further cost-of-living schemes for the city’s most vulnerable residents and funding for parish councils so they can run community-based projects  
    • £15,000 to launch a knife crime reduction pilot which sees community groups engage with young people during the summer holiday
    • Extra funding for mental health organisations

    However the Conservative Group voted against the 23/24 budget and the Progressive Alliance’s plans for residents and services.

    Councillor Pete Marland, Labour Leader of Milton Keynes City Council, said: “Tonight we passed a budget to be proud of. Despite having to make £11m in savings next year, we can deliver a below-inflation council tax rise and don’t have to make any cuts to core services, all while providing extra support for hard-working residents during the cost-of-living crisis.”

    Councillor Robin Bradburn, Lib Dem Deputy Leader of Milton Keynes City Council, added: “This budget will make sure we can get to work on what local people really care about. Whether it be helping families pay their energy bills or filling thousands more potholes, the Progressive Alliance will continue to put people and services first.”

    Conservatives in Milton Keynes have taken to social media to share their reactions to the budget, with the party saying that the Labour and Lib Dem alliance rejected its proposal of an additional £80,000 over the next two years to fund knife crime prevention sessions for all year 5 and 6 students.

    The party has said it is a 'failure' by the Labour-Lib Dems to invest in the safety young people in Milton Keynes.

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