Proposed Budget Version 1 Rejected

Posted on 18th December, 2022



The proposed Budget Version 1 was not accepted by full council, further meetings are required before deciding Bleadon's taxes/precept in January 2023.


UPDATE 16JAN23 - BPC set a budget and precept of £64K an 18.5% increase on last year (listen to the Budget discussion) Neither the Current nor Future Reserves were discussed? (See Jan Budget blog)



Due to various errors and omissions BPC decided not to accept the proposed £87K budget at their meeting on Monday. Neither the current or proposed Reserves, nor a proposed Precept were discussed. The Budget Working Group will meet again to review information and bring a new proposal to full council in January 2023 before submission to North Somerset at the end of that month.


The clerk/Responsible Financial Officer was unable to send the 2023/24 Budget Proposal prior to the meeting, but there were printed copies available at the meeting on Monday,12 December.


The budget was separated into a number of documents, draft annotated versions of which are seen below:

  • The Draft Budget 23-24 v1
    • Income and Expenditure errors and omissions
    • No Bleadon in Bloom £1K Grant as mentioned in Dec meeting (Mendip/Somerset Community Foundation last year?)
    • No £5K NSC Playground Dec 22 Min 357.7.5 (358?)
  • Staff Budget breakdown
    • 7% increase on 2022-23 agreed budget
  • Grants
    • No grants, donations or contributions planned, e.g. Youth Club, Halls, Playground, etc. 
  •  Administration Budget breakdown
    • Newsletter £5K propseed expenditure and £2K proposed income, 38% Editor fee increase
    • Shared clerk costs?
    • Parish councll elections due next year £4,100?
  • Open Spaces Budget breakdown
  • Projects breakdown
    • King's Celebrations - £1K
    • Church Clock £2K
    • [Toilet Refurbishments £20K postponed for yet another year despite a £10K toilet related grant received in 2020?]
  • There was no information given as to existing or proposed Reserves, assumed to be low due to deficit budgets to date, Reserve stated to be £65K as at 31 Mar 22

With regards to the current concerns raised with the External Auditor, a resident (not BOB) asked what is being done by the council to limit financial risk and become more transparent. The Chair replied that it had set up a (closed undocumented) Communications Working Party to improve communications and a Budget Working party to monitor the budget. Also stating that both working parties had met and the (internal) results had been very positive. However, from BOB and the public’s perspective the Agenda and Minutes are still coming out later and later, no appendices are released, and the delayed and limited budget information that has been released contains factual and numerical errors!!


The two most vocal councillors also appeared to be unconcerned that BPC has decided to engage the External Auditor at £355 per hour rather than to simply release existing information in an open and transparent manner, as reflected in its approach to this budget process.


Addtional Information:


See also:

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