How should Tameside Council and NHS Tameside & Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group spends its - and YOUR - money?
That’s the big-budget question now being put to all residents and workers across the borough - and everyone is being encouraged to take part in a discussion that affects all of our lives.
And we want you to be a part of it - to help shape the Tameside we all want for the year ahead as we enter a whole new decade.
From schools to street lights, GP surgeries to mental health - residents are being asked for their views on what local spending priorities should be.
Would you like to see more money being spent on extra bin collections, fixing more potholes more quickly, more free parking, clearing up the scourge of flytipping, CCTV, improving parks and library services, or reducing business rates to help local high street firms?
Should schools get extra funding, or would you like to see more money for child and social care or extra funding for mental health services - or more money for health and wellbeing and preventing illnesses, by helping people change their lifestyles, stop smoking and eat more healthily?
All this and more is up for debate right now.
Priorities for where or how the money should be spent, plus ideas for saving money or raising extra revenue are all wanted to help shape the future of the borough.
We want to hear your views too - what all of our readers and listeners think is vitally important - and you can send us your thoughts as well as engage with the ‘Big Budget Conversation’ right here.
Tameside Council and NHS Tameside & Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group are responsible for a huge range of services - just some are listed above - spending £935 million a year on supporting local people and businesses.
Council Tax and Business Rates make up £177m of that total.
Although extra funds are now being allocated by central government to local authorities - for example, to help deal with issues like homelessness, the cash councils receive has significantly reduced in recent years because of austerity.
That means Tameside Council and NHS Tameside & Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group have to develop innovative ways to deliver services, make savings plus raise extra revenue.
The budget conversation to invite people’s thoughts on two key issues is now underway:
The two issues are...
• What should be the spending priorities for 2020/21 and future years?
• Ideas or suggestions as to how it might deliver services more efficiently, save money or raise revenue.
Tameside Council Executive Leader Cllr Brenda Warrington said: “It’s important to us that residents and workers have an opportunity to give their views on how we continue to deliver and improve upon the services that matter the most to them while also balancing the books on ever reduced funding from central government.”
NHS Tameside & Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group Joint Chair Ashwin Ramachandra added: “Together our services support people through every stage of life from giving children the best start to supporting people to stay well and independent into old age. We want people to get involved in having an understanding of how we pay for this on reduced budgets and we want to hear their views on which services are most important to them and how they could be delivered more efficiently.”
Anyone who lives or works in Tameside and Glossop can take part in the budget conversation by completing the online survey at: https://www.tameside.gov.uk/budgetconversation2020/21
Or, you can email your views and ideas directly to email@example.com
You can find out a full list of all the services provided and where the money goes by visiting https://www.tameside.gov.uk/TamesideMBC/media/policy/Budget-Conversation-2020.pdf
The conversation runs until January 15. A number of public drop-in sessions have already taken place but two more are to be held at the Wellbeing Corner in Ashton Market Hall on Tuesday, January 7, from 12 noon to 1pm and on Monday, January 13, from 10am to 12 noon. Residents are invited to go along and leave their views.
How would you spend £935m?
How should Tameside Council and NHS Tameside & Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group spends its - and your - money?
How could the local authority save money and raise more revenue?
Although we can pass your views on we cannot complete the online survey personally on behalf of readers, so don’t forget to complete the survey at https://www.tameside.gov.uk/budgetconversation2020/21.