Precept 2024/25 - Budget Statement from Horley Town Council
The Annual Budget of Horley Town Council has been confirmed and the Precept for 2024/25 has been set at a total net figure of £604,096. This means that the Town element of Council Tax will be an average annual amount of £ 54 per household, representing an increase of £6.24 per Band D property (+ 13.1 %). This figure is well below the National Average figure for Town and Parish Councils which last year (2023/24) was £79.35.
The Precept increase is due to a rise in inflation and higher costs to cover council services and this required careful decisions to be made in this regard. We equally understand that rising household bills creates significant financial pressures for many residents and we must maintain a pragmatic approach to financial management and use of public money. Consistent progress with our five year Town Plan objectives reinforces our steadfast approach to deliver local community projects through innovation and commitment along with other meaningful ways to support the local community and to promote well-being and social cohesion.
After taking full opportunity for various grant funding possibilities, we made four successful bids to the Reigate & Banstead Strategic CIL Infrastructure Programme and some of these projects are now underway. These include resurfacing areas at the allotment sites; replacement of the perimeter railings at Horley Recreation Ground with CCTV and LED lighting enhancements; a playground upgrade at Michael Crescent Centenary Park; and expansion of the Town Council offices with a key focus on sustainability as part of our pledge to embed sustainable climate action through council activities. These projects will, where possible, be delivered through a detailed spending plan to save money in the longer term with such measures as replacing ageing infrastructure, cutting carbon emissions and investing in low energy solutions to reduce core costs.
To improve community safety at our parks, we have secured extra funding to install new railings around the play areas at Horley Recreation Ground and Court Lodge Fields. We are most grateful to receive this financial support from County Councillors which has also enabled us to again make provision for the superb floral displays around the town. We are also taking forward more environmental activities with a roll out of wildflower planting and have increased outdoor furniture at many of our parks and open spaces. We would also welcome support from community groups and businesses through sponsorship.
The Town Council will continue to support St Bartholomew’s Church and has made provision for a grant towards its grounds’ maintenance budget, subject to approval of an application from the Church. In addition, we can offer grant funding opportunities to community groups (subject to eligibility) through the Council Grants Scheme and applications can also be made to the Horley Edmonds Fund.
Additionally, the Town Council will continue to seek funding from appropriate bodies and will have earmarked funds for ongoing maintenance and infrastructure upgrades. This important work will continue as part of our strategic Town Plan objectives and overall vision. We are fortunate to have strong communication links with our principal authorities and through important collaborative working, are able to provide important input as well as influence important decision-making, to help support the economic growth of Horley as a prosperous and vibrant town, both now and in the future.
Horley Town Council remains committed to delivering and enhancing its facilities as well as setting out our key objectives, based upon what really matters to Horley residents in these modern times. Detailed information on the budget will be made available on our website or from the Town Council offices.
On a final note, on behalf of our Members, I would like to invite all Horley residents to sign up to our free monthly Newsletter from the home page of our website or follow us on X (Twitter) or Facebook to be kept regularly informed about Horley Town Council’s business and other activities. Thank you.
Cllr Jordan Beech, Finance Lead Member
12 December 2023