Severe financial impact of COVID-19 on Council set out

Calderdale Council

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet will discuss the financial implications of COVID-19 at its meeting on Monday 27 April 2020.

Capturing the financial and organisational impact of coronavirus is part of the Council’s 10 point plan to respond to the risks related to COVID-19.

Initial forecasts suggest the potential cost of COVID-19 to the Council could be in the region of £36million. This includes the significant loss of income from the closure of various services such as sports facilities, the temporary ceasing of charges such as parking, as well as meeting escalating additional costs in areas like social care.

The Council does not have sufficient reserves to meet these costs and without further government support, significant and severe reductions in spend will be necessary, impacting on the role and future delivery of Council services.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet will discuss the potential financial implications in the short term and assess the action required to sustain the financial health of the Council in the long term.

The Leader of Calderdale Council, Cllr Tim Swift, said: 

“Even before the coronavirus crisis, councils across the country faced significant financial pressures. In Calderdale, the additional work we’re currently undertaking, coupled with the impact of substantial reductions in income is putting our finances under considerable strain. The virus has also come at a time when we’re still in a period of recovery from recent flooding.

“We are joining other councils to push for a commitment from the government that it will meet the extra costs local authorities are facing due to COVID-19.

“Our priority will always be to protect the most vulnerable people in our communities and we’re aware that this period has also brought considerable challenges for many of our residents and businesses.

“We welcome funding support announced to date by government, but this will meet less than a third of the current funding gap we face. Without further investment, the Council will both look different and be required to reduce and cease many services in the long term.”

The initial potential financial implications will be discussed at the meeting of Calderdale Council’s Cabinet on Monday 27 April. The meeting will be held virtually from 6pm and will be live streamed through the Council’s YouTube channel.

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