Services provided by Farnham Town Council will continue to offer excellent value for money as members of the council voted to increase the town council’s element of the 2014/15 council tax by less than two pence per week for an average band D property. This is below the rate of inflation.

Councillor Roger Steel presented a report to councillors and described how action taken during the last year to increase fees and charges and the efficient management of contracts and staff vacancies had helped to offset pressures on the budget.

He further explained how the proposal to increase the council tax is in recognition of the demand from residents for the town council to continue to provide quality services. The increase is also necessary for addressing cost pressures and ensuring sound finances for future years.

Speaking after the meeting, spokesperson for the Council, Councillor John Ward said: “During 2014/15 our focus will be very much on further enhancing the community for our residents. We will maintain our commitment to grant nearly six per cent of the money we raise in council tax to local organisations. We are also planning some additional spending on community initiatives such as clean-up projects, extending Christmas lights to the villages and improving our communication with residents.”

He adds: “By managing our budget efficiently and increasing the amount of income we generate, we have been able to control our proposed expenditure and keep it at a sensible level. We are pleased that despite the challenges for the year ahead, the precept, which is the amount of money we need to raise through council tax for 2014/15, is still lower than it was two years ago. I am satisfied that we are providing our residents with excellent value for money.”

Based on a Band D property, each household will pay £56.87 to Farnham Town Council during 2014/15.

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