Whitnash council cuts 'grossly unfair' - The Leamington Observer

Whitnash council cuts 'grossly unfair'

Leamington Editorial 3rd Nov, 2016   0

CUTS to the funding Whitnash Town Council receives are ‘grossly unfair’ claim councillors.

In a letter to Warwick District Council, the council has shared concerns Whitnash residents were not reaping the same benefits as those in Leamington, Warwick and Kenilworth for their council tax contributions.

A Freedom of Information (FOI) request to Warwick District Council revealed some £159,700 is spent on ‘neighbourhood services’ like maintaining parks and open spaces.

But the Acre Close and Washbourne fields in Whitnash have not been recognised by the district council as ‘destination parks’ – like Leamington’s Jephson Gardens, Warwick’s St Nicholas Park, and Kenilworth’s Abbey Fields – meaning there will no longer be funding provided to maintain them.

In a letter to district council finance officers, the town council said the cuts were ‘clear discrimination against residents’ as Whitnash taxpayers contributed towards the destination parks.

They added both the town and district councils had a responsibility to provide recreational facilities and questioned how the budget cut could be justified.

Warwick District Council is already tightening its belts by cutting council tax reduction grants in half and the double hit to Whitnash Town Council would mean having to consider a major hike to its share of the council tax bill.

The town council said: “If Warwick District Council no longer pays for concurrent services maybe they would prefer to maintain Acre Close and Washbourne playing fields at the standard currently applied, including litter picking from Monday to Saturday.

“No doubt this will be at a much higher cost than Whitnash Town Council currently pays.

“Warwick District Council should consider retaining concurrent services payments in view of the loss of council tax reduction grants and so avoid double taxation.”

Warwick District Council’s Executive committee was set to review its support of town and parish council yesterday (Wednesday) as The Observer went to press.


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