Message from the Leader of the council, Councillor Judith Blake

a headshot of Councillor Blake

Leeds City Council faces another challenging year in the face of continuing cuts to the funding it receives from central government. With demand for council services such as social care for adults and children increasing significantly, it remains an incredibly difficult time for public services.

To help meet that demand, Council tax will rise in Leeds by 1.99 per cent. There will be an additional three per cent rise in the Adult Social Care precept, which is the way Government has instructed councils to support this service.

The money raised by the precept is only a small proportion of the full amount needed to cope with the increasing demand for social care for older and disabled people in Leeds.

As a council protecting our most vulnerable residents is paramount and around two thirds of the council’s overall budget is now used to support services for vulnerable young people and older people.

We continue to adapt to make the council more efficient and get best use for the money you pay in council tax. The council will continue to get smaller, with staff reductions and a review of its assets. Since 2010 our workforce has reduced by 2500, without compulsory redundancies, saving £55m a year.

Despite continuing austerity, we maintain our vision for Leeds to be the best city in the UK. A key priority is to stimulate economic growth to create job and apprenticeship opportunities for young people in Leeds.

We are now the second most successful ‘core city’ for attracting outside businesses to invest in Leeds, we have the fastest rate of private sector jobs growth of any major UK city and we have been recognised as the best city in the UK for quality of life.

We have to make sure all communities in Leeds benefit from these successes and our work to tackle the inequalities that persist in Leeds remains fundamental to this.

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