Consultation on amendments to the budget 2020-21

We provide a huge range of essential services to the people of Kent, spending over £1.6 billion each year.

The 2020-21 budget was approved at the County Council meeting on 13 February 2020.

Since then, we have faced unprecedented additional spending and loss of income due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This means we now need to re-look at our budget and make some changes. Before we do this, we wanted to find out what you think is important.

The extra spending we have had to deal with includes things like:

  • buying and distributing additional personal protective equipment (PPE) to staff and care providers
  • maintaining payments to early years and childcare providers, even where they have had to temporarily close
  • securing additional temporary mortuary provision.

Examples of loss of income we have suffered include:

  • less money from wedding ceremonies
  • less uptake of community learning (adult education) courses
  • reduced income from country parks through café and car parking charges.

2020-2021 budget

Here is a reminder of the current 2020-2021 budget:

You can read more below about council services and current year’s revenue spending.

Your views

The consultation on amendments to the budget closed on 9 August 2020.

You told us your views on:

  • the action we should take to balance the budget – we have 5 options for you to consider such as making changes to services and lobbying government for more funding
  • the future of our services – what do you think we should prioritise spending on?

We are now preparing the consultation report which will go to the County Council meeting on 10 September 2020 and will be published on this page.

Consultation documents

Consultation report

You can now read the consultation report (PDF, 563.8 KB). The report will be considered at the County Council meeting on 10 September 2020.

You can access these documents in different formats on our consultation page.

What you have previously told us

Last autumn we asked you about your priorities and we're keen to see if they've changed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. You can read about last year's results in the budget consultation report (PDF, 3.1 MB).

2020-21 revenue spending - excluding schools

The information below is a reminder of our 2020-21 revenue spending (agreed in February 2020).

Budget revenue spend pie chart

Service Total spend (£m)Total spend less income (£m) Total spend less income (%)
Adults and older people 574.5 431.8 40.6%
Children's social care 192.7 160.0 15.0%
Children's other services 146.2 28.72.7%
Community services36.813.91.3%
Other direct services to the public36.922.82.1%
Highways 44.235.23.3%
Public health 69.30.00.0%
Schools and high needs 86.10.00.0%
Schools' services19.72.70.3%
Transport services 92.6787.3%
Waste services 77.574.97.0%
Unallocated budgets pending decisions 6.26.20.6%
Borrowing costs 131.0112.010.5%
Costs of running our operational premises 28.921.5 2.0%
Management, support services and overheads 109.875.7 7.1%
Total £1,652.4m £1,063.7m 100.0%

How we are funded

Funding for our budget comes from many sources in addition to Council Tax, including business rates and grants from central government. Nearly half of our budget (excluding schools) is made up of money we receive from Council Tax. Each year we set a budget to decide how much we're able to spend on services for Kent residents and businesses for the next financial year, compared to how much income we're likely to get from government and local taxation to fund this.

Funding sourceAmount (£m)% of gross spend (excluding schools)
Council Tax753.345.6%
Grants (ringfenced for a specific purpose)317.019.2%
Income from service users271.716.4%
Grants (un-ringfenced)242.214.7%
Business rates58.53.5%
Revenue support grant9.60.6%
Total1,652.4100%

Services for children, young people and families

  • 84 children's centres and early years services
  • Supporting 1,600 children in care and 1,700 care leavers
  • Emotional wellbeing and mental health services
  • Health visiting and child health checks
  • Fostering, adoption and 10,000+ social work cases
  • KCC Travel Saver and home to school transport
  • Working with 583 schools on places, planning and access
  • Special educational needs and disability including transport
  • Apprenticeships, skills and career pathways for young people

Services for older and vulnerable people

  • Support for 4,900 adults with learning disabilities
  • 4,100 permanent residential care placements
  • Respite, safeguarding and support for 152,000 carers
  • Support for 3,200 social care clients with mental health needs
  • Support for 1,200 older people in nursing care homes
  • Partnership working between health and social care
  • 7,000 people receiving care and support at home
  • Support for 5,300 adults with physical disability and sensory needs
  • 2,400 people using day care services in their community

Our strategic priorities

We prioritise spending on services that:

  • make sure children and young people get the best start in life
  • help communities to feel the benefits of economic growth by being in work, healthy and enjoying a good quality of life
  • help older and vulnerable residents to be safe and supported with choices to live independently.

These are our current strategic priorities. Our Strategic Statement Annual Report gives details of how every pound spent in Kent is used to deliver better outcomes for Kent’s residents, communities and businesses.

You can find out more about the council’s finances on our finance and budget pages, including what we spend our money on and Council Tax.