Market Rasen Town Council cuts tax for 2013/14

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Market Rasen residents will pay the town council less tax next year as members voted to reduce the authority’s precept by five per cent.

As well as cutting its budget for the financial year 2013/14, Mayor Steve Bunney announced last week that the town council will use some of its “healthy” reserves to finance several key projects in Market Rasen.

These will include, the refurbishment of The Old Police Station, new play equipment for children in Mill Road Playing Field, 
rejuvenation of the Market Place , new street furniture and further modernisation of The Festival Hall.

Coun Bunney said: “We took the decision that we wanted to reduce our precept.

“We have also taken the decision to use some of the reserves we have to fund some projects.”

Coun Bunney outlined plans to use council monies to push ahead with the decoration and repairs to the guttering of the Old Police Station rather than just talking about it, which he admitted the authority had been guilty of over the past 12 months.

The retiring rooms at the rear of the building will be converted into high quality office accommodation, which could be rented out to earn the council additional monies, and a survey of the buildings structural integrity will be carried out.

He also said that further modernisation of The Festival Hall was necessary to ensure the hard work undertaken to build the facility 30 years ago would still be available to the community for 30 years to come.

Coun Bunney said that while funds had not been set aside in this particular budget, the council would also investigate gaining grants over the coming year to help provide sustainable energy for The Festival Hall and possibly the Old Police Station.

He added: “We could go on with lots of other projects, but I feel these are projects achievable in the next 18 months.

“We will be challenging ourselves to ensure the Market Place is going to make £10,000 a year and the Festival Hal £275,000 a year in revenue to keep the precept this low. If we get these sums, they become as good as zero expense.”

But the council will cut the amount of money it spends on the town’s Christmas lights from £8,000 to £4,000.

The budget proposals, which will be verified when the council officially sets its precept for 2013/14 at a future meeting, were unanimously supported by members.