Bad summer for wasps hits council coffers in Forest of Dean – This is Gloucestershire

A £118,000 shortfall in council income will not be passed onto taxpayers, officials have said.

Papers have revealed Forest of Dean District Council’s planning and building control department is £86,000 down on projected income, while its pest control service has a £45.00,000 black hole.

  1. Forest of Dean District Council offices

    Forest of Dean District Council offices

Opposition member Councillor Paul McMahon (L, Coleford East) said the cash deficits need to be addressed but questioned how the Conservative administration will do it.

“With the planning shortfall, that’s a reflection really of just fewer and fewer applications being made,” he said.

“The pest control one is in many ways more of a worry because I think that shows people are just going elsewhere and using other services to get any probelms dealt with.

“You would think in the wet weather over the summer, you would see more pests coming out but we’ve still got this shortfall.

“No-one wants to see services cut and I hope that doesn’t happen but how will it be addressed?

“If they need to raise the revenue, the only way I can see them doing that is by raising council tax.”

But bosses are optimistic the cash can be found, without making residents fork out.

Derek Broom, group manager for finance and property at Forest of Dean District Council, said: “The problems identified are in year budget issues and will not impact on council tax.

“Pest control income is down, partly due to the poor summer that saw a large drop in call-outs for wasp nests. The shortfall in Building Control fees is due to the continued economic downturn. The senior management team are confident that, as in previous years, they will deliver a balanced budget by 31 March 2013.”

The figures were revealed as part of the council’s second quarter performance report which, on the whole it said made positive reading. The new paid-for garden waste scheme is proving a success, added Councillor Brian Robinson, cabinet member for efficient council.

Bad summer for wasps hits council coffers in Forest of Dean – This is Gloucestershire
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