Council tax freeze for town proposed

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Cramlington Town Council has proposed its budget for next year, with the charge for its services set to remain at its current level.

This would be the second successive year that the council has kept its charge unchanged – it is planning to absorb cost increases through efficiency savings.

Coun John Collins, chairman of Cramlington Town Council.

The precept would remain the lowest charge levied by the ‘new’ town councils within the former Blyth Valley Borough Council area.

In addition, councillors will aim to address issues residents say should be priorities to help improve the town.

And the town council has approved a number of projects that will see improvements to the environment, community safety and events..

Among the improvements will be I love NE23. This is an initiative to engage the local community in improving and maintaining the environment and streetscape of the town to be run in conjunction with Cramlington in Bloom.

Others include a commemoration fund to support events to mark the Armistice of 1918 and the 150th anniversary of St Nicholas’ Church, a town centre safety scheme, continuation of the subway and railings painting programme and the recruitment of an enforcement officer to deal with parking and litter issues.

It also plans to refurbish Seven Oaks playground and provide a new playground at Beaconhill. It is anticipated that the projects will be mainly funded by external grants.

The budget and improvements were provisionally agreed at a meeting earlier this month.

Coun John Collins, chairman of Cramlington Town Council, said: “We know it’s important to people for us to keep our charge as low as we can.

“I’m pleased that this year we will not be increasing the precept, but we are able to fund improvements around the issues that residents have told us are their priorities.”

Details of the budget proposals are available on the town council’s website and residents have until Tuesday, January 2, to comment via the website or its Facebook page.

A final decision will be taken at the local authority’s next meeting on January 11.

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