MAJOR BOOST TO THE CAMPAIGN FOR A RURAL STRATEGY:
The Independent Food, Farming & Countryside Commission hosted by the RSA in its report launched on Tuesday 16th July ‘Our Future in the Land’ has added its voice to the calls by the RSN and the House of Lords Select Committee for a comprehensive Rural Strategy (more to follow)
This maintains the level of the RSDG at 18/19 levels of £81Million and the Government recognised the 'extra costs of providing services in these communities'.
Rural residents pay on average more in Council Tax than urban residents. Despite the Government celebrating an increase of Core Spending Power for local authorities from £45.1bn to £46.4bn this includes calculations for Council Tax within these figures. It is unfair that rural residents pay more for their local services from their own pocket compared to urban residents, due to historical underfunding of rural areas.
We are concerned at the growing elderly population in rural areas and the ability of Local Authorities to support those vulnerable residents with social care. The RSN welcomes the £650Million highlighted for Adult and Childrens Social Care but is concerned about whether the Government has a long term plan to resolve funding so that Rural Councils have enough money to care for their residents.
We are examining the Provisional Settlement in more detail and are pleased that the Government is today announcing the Fairer Funding Consultation.
Councillor Cecelia Motley, Chair of the Rural Services Network said "It is encouraging that the Secretary of State recognises the extra costs of providing services in rural areas, and we look forward to those costs being fully recognised in the fair distribution of funding following the Fair Funding Review."
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