Amble Town Council news: Dec 2011 – Jan 2012
Thanks to everyone who bought a ticket for our food hamper
raffle during the Torchlight Procession. We raised £118 for Amble
Christmas Lights. The winning ticket was 104 – Christine Mather.
NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY COUNCIL compile the request for each householdmade up from the amount needed for their services (approx. 93% of what you pay), that requested by the Police Authority (approx. 5%) and the amount (precept) for your Town or Parish Council (approx. 2%). Each Local Council compiles its budget by December so the amount can be put into the N.C.C. total sent out in March for April 2012/13.
Every Council carefully considers what it needs to cover administration and functions as well as money to use for its own community. It is a rare Council which would only respond to consultations etc. and do nothing to help its own area. Your Council has always made some money available to help local groups/ causes/ projects. Most of these are small and would find it difficult to get grants from outside sources and those who can apply are greatly helped if they show they have local support. Many are perplexed at how the local tax varies so widely from parish to parish. You have 100 households and you need £1000 so each gives you £10. But if you live in a larger household area such as Blyth or Ashington there could be 250 households, so each would give only £4 or you could charge them the same then you’d have £2,500! Or you could live in a small village of 25 households, then you’d need to give £40 each. Hence, Ashington’s precept in 2011/12 of £213,160 has band D of only £25.82 but Widdrington’s precept, with the much smaller sum of £5,500, has band D of £75.31!
So how does it happen that Amble’s precept is £98,650 and band D is £53.49 whilst Alnwick’s is £123,403 with band D only £44.68 and Hexham’s is £228,000 but band D only £51.61? This is because households are ‘banded’ – lowest is band A, going up to highest at band H the greater value households pay a higher amount of tax. (The comparison is usually for band D.) So if a parish has lots of higher band households who give more of the total, the band D will be lower than a parish which has few high banded properties. Amble has lots of band A and fewer high bands and that’s how your band D is higher than others in the area. It is very difficult to decide now what will happen in the next 12- 18 months. There is always ongoing maintenance, development and replacements costs to consider, but a wonderful project to improve the town for everyone could emerge in May and most people would expect Council to financially help! Hence although it seems we have a lot in the bank, every penny is allocated to a budget heading for that year or building up amounts for future work.
Last year we were very aware of the poor financial climate and we looked long and hard at our costs making as many cutbacks as we could to keep the precept from rising. However we cannot do the same this year with extra responsibilities being given to us by N.C.C. We all have hopes, dreams and ideas but unfortunately we have to be realistic and understand we cannot always realise them due to the costs with very little external financial help currently available.
I SHOULD IMAGINE that you all know about the County Council’s transfer of maintenance costs on flowerbeds, bus shelters, grass cutting, park benches etc. to the Town Council; but I think we should be looking further ahead than that. It can take such a long time to achieve a worthwhile objective. Specifically, I was thinking about the closure of the Day Centre in Charles Road. In future years (and sooner rather than later) I would like to see the Town Council have freehold premises in which (amongst other functions) a new Day Centre can be accommodated. It is this line of reasoning that led to our Council Meeting Room being made available to non- profit, startup, groups in Amble in the hope that they will outgrow the space we can provide and move to rented accommodation elsewhere in Amble. Phone our Town Clerk on Amble 714695 and tell her what YOU think.
WELCOME to the new Central ward Councillor, Kate Morrison. May she enjoy her time helping the town. There is still a vacancy in this ward.
THE STEERING GROUP has met to begin co-ordinating all the plans for the different events it is hoped will take place around June 2nd-5th 2012. As there will be lots going on nationally, it is vital to get bookings in now and very important to get funding in place as soon as possible. We want the whole community to be involved in the celebrations whether contributing in some way or just having a great time enjoying everything. Look out for fund raising events to attend.
OLYMPIC TORCH – LOOK OUT for details of events next year
MAY YOU ALL ENJOY a wonderful festive break and make a New Year’s resolution to ‘Take a Pride in Amble’ doing all you can to make our town a warm, welcoming, attractive place.
Robert Arckless, 37 Anne Crescent, Amble NE65 0QZ Tel: 01665 711938
Helen Lewis, 11 Kennedy Road, Amble NE65 0QH Tel: 01665 710429
Craig Weir, 76 Priory Park, Amble NE65 0HY Tel: 01665 712342
Leslie Bilboe, (CHAIR) 10 The Close, Amble NE65 0HZ Tel: 01665 713364
Ian Hinson, (Vice-Chair) 11 Eastgarth Avenue, Amble. NE65 0LW Tel: 01665 710583
Sam Palin, 40 Bisley Road, Amble. NE65 0NP Tel: 01665 714115
Rev. Velda Nicholson, 24 Glendale, Amble NE65 0RG Tel: 01665 713796
Kate Morrison, 3 Island View Amble NE65 0SE Tel: 01665 711191
TOWN COUNCIL OFFICES, THE QUAYSIDE, AMBLE. NE65 0AP Tel: 01665 714 695 email@example.com www.amble.gov.uk
Elaine Brown (Town Clerk) Angela Burn (Clerical Assistant)
10-11.30a.m. & 1.30-3p.m. Monday to Friday
Minutes available to view in Office or at Amble Library