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Lib Dem council votes through £6m for new affordable homes as part of annual budget

February 27, 2019 9:41 AM

Tonight, Lib Dem-run South Lakeland District Council passed its annual budget which included a £6m boost to housing associations to build new affordable homes.

Over the past 5 years, the council has got 460 affordable homes to rent built, but with around 3,000 people currently on the housing waiting list, much more still needs to be done.

On top of the £6m for more affordable housing, the budget will also provide:

- Over £9m for Ulverston Leisure Centre

- Over £4m for a Mintworks 2 business hub and refurbishment of South Lakeland House and Kendal Town Hall.

- Nearly £2m for refurbishment of Grange Lido.

- Nearly £500k for additional homelessness accommodation for families.

- Nearly £200k investment in improving play areas

- £100k contribution to the Abbot Hall redevelopment.

- £100k relating to potential works to Windermere Road car park in Grange to help alleviate flooding

The budget includes a modest increase in Council Tax for a band D property of £5 per year. This increase of 2.6% is less than that seen in 75% of councils across the country.

This means that residents in South Lakeland will continue to pay a lower Council Tax for their district (including parish precept) than in all the neighbouring councils. In Conservative-run Eden for example, the residents of Penrith pay £37 more council tax than those in Kendal, while the residents of Kirkby Stephen pay £90 more than those in Sedbergh.

Councillor Andrew Jarvis, finance portfolio holder said: "This is a budget that provides money for our top priorities: building more affordable homes, helping to grow businesses with a Mintworks 2, tackling flooding and providing accommodation for the most vulnerable in our society.

"But even more importantly - despite the huge financial strain imposed on us by the Conservative Government - we are managing to do all this whilst keeping Council Tax low and keeping a balanced budget.

"This means that this is not just a budget which will benefit residents right now but also means that South Lakeland District Council will be in a fit shape to carry on providing key services for local people well into the future."