Your chance to ‘spend’ millions

July 28 2016

Like all councils in the UK, Bristol faces big financial challenges in the coming years. We know that funding will go down, costs will go up and more people need our services

Like all councils in the UK, Bristol faces big financial challenges in the coming years. We know that funding will go down, costs will go up and more people need our services. Because of this we’ll have some really difficult decisions to make on how we spend money to meet your needs and create a fairer city where no-one is left behind. 

These decisions will affect most of us in one way or another. So I want to hear what you have to say. I want you to tell us how you think we should spend and save. To help we’ve built an online simulator to let you do just that.

The budget simulator breaks down the services we provide and describes what they do. It puts you in control of increasing or decreasing budgets in a bid to save at least £60m, so you can get a real sense of the issues and the impact of making savings. Visit the simulator from your computer, smartphone or tablet at bristol.budgetsimulator.com. 

Whilst this isn’t a referendum – so no promises about our final decisions - it is a chance for you to show me what your priorities are. In return we’ll absolutely consider all the responses as we plan for the future. 

It isn’t all budgetary doom and gloom. The West of England region is seeking around £1bn of new money and power from the Government and has agreed a deal in principle. This moves new control to the local area, so whilst the money can’t go towards closing our existing budget gap, it will mean more local control over things like housing, planning, transport and education & skills. In short, the potential for more homes, jobs and local investment. 

To have your say on this deal and the things that come with it – like a directly elected regional Mayor – visit our online survey at westofenglanddevolution.co.uk.          

        All too often local councils are accused of not engaging local people. I really hope you’ll take a little time to be part of these important conversations – because in these uncertain times there’s no doubt they’ll have a real impact on Bristol’s future. 

If you have any ideas or suggestions please email mayor@bristol.gov.uk