Latest figures show Winchester City Council is delivering strong financial results

Winchester City Council’s latest financial figures have shown a healthy surplus of £1.8m which will help the authority continue to deliver services.

Due to strong financial stewardship and a number of one-off benefits and additional income generated, the Council’s finances are in good position to cope with future challenges.

Of the £1.8m surplus currently £1m has already been allocated to deliver services in the current financial year and a further £789,000 will go into general reserves to help to provide support services in the future and protect potential financial instability in the future.

Despite this the Council faces significant fiscal tests due to the removal of core government grant, rising demand on services and the resetting of the Council’s business rates.

The Council has prepared for this and the current year’s budget already has over one million pounds of savings included. There are also schemes under development to provide further income and savings options for the Council.

The news comes after the Council introduced a new set of reporting measures this year to demonstrate the accountability of the cabinet against core objectives.

The Cabinet are also due to receive the treasury management outturn report. This highlights that the organisation has generated a surplus above budget on its investment returns. At the same time, the Council has managed to safeguard its investments with comparatively strong credit risk ratings.

The authority also continues to make progress with its outcome measures in the Council Strategy, and 90 per cent of measures in the strategy are either completed or on-track.

Portfolio Holder for Finance, Councillor Guy Ashton said:

“I am very pleased with this set of financial and performance reports. We have shown through this reporting a strong set of financial figures and some really positive progress against meeting our strategic objectives and delivering projects.

The financial pressure on the Council and local government as a whole is likely to continue long into the next decade. We have been preparing for this, and a number of our projects have long term financial opportunities to support all of our services.

We know that there are areas we can improve upon, and we will continue to challenge ourselves to provide the best services for our residents and stakeholders.”