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Council Budgets

On an annual basis we produce a budget that aims to provide financial stability and long-term prosperity while delivering services within affordable limits.

The budget-setting process passes through a number of stages and takes into account several factors, including funding from Central Government and local taxpayers, key local priorities and changes in legislation. 

The Council set a three-year budget in March 2017, covering the period 2017-2020, which required the delivery of £20.6m of savings. Reports provided during the year to Cabinet have provided an update on progress towards achieving these savings and any emerging issues.


Following approval by Cabinet, we propose a budget for the forthcoming financial year.  Each council portfolio details spending plans to address key challenges and assist the delivery of the council's stated priorities.  

The budget setting process passes through a number of stages, and the reports detailing the approval process are shown under Useful Links.

A three year budget covering the period 2017-2020 was considered and approved by Cabinet on 22nd February 2017, and by full Council on 1st March 2017.

The budget for 2018/19 was refreshed following the Local Government Finance Settlement and was considered and approved by Cabinet on 21st February 2018 and by full Council on 28th February 2018.

The views of local people and key stakeholders are an integral part of the budget setting process.

The council uses a Budget Simulator tool to encourage residents to have their say on council spending and services that are important to them. This tool was used in relation to the 2017/18 budget and informed the setting of a three-year budget covering the period 2017-2020, allowing residents to understand some of the potential implications and tough decisions that need to be taken by council members as part of its budget-setting process.

Summary reports in relation to the 2015/16, 2016/17 and 2017/18 Budget Consultation exercises, undertaken via the Budget Simulator, can be found under Related Documents, as can the summary report for the 2018/19 Budget Consultation.

The Budget Consultation for 2019/20 is now closed and the results of the consultation can be found under Related Documents.

Following consultation with the public and key stakeholders the proposed budget is approved by Members at the end of February/beginning of March.

Every year the Council publishes a Budget Book setting out the agreed budget for the forthcoming financial year.  

This document can be found under Related Documents.

The Council has produced an Efficiency Plan 2016, which brings together a number of important existing strategies including the Medium Term Financial Strategy and the Council's Delivery Plan. Its aim is to demonstrate that despite some significant challenges, the Council has a clear approach to delivering its future savings programme and its organisational and community ambitions.

St Helens Council Efficiency Plan 2016