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Cabinet approves budget plans that include improvements in street cleaning and road repairs but scrapping free car parking in some areas

PUBLISHED: 14:00 14 February 2019

Council leader, Cllr Damian White (centre) with Deputy Leader Cllr Robert Benham and Cabinet Member for Environment, Cllr Osman Dervish with Havering street cleaning staff. Photo: Havering Council

Council leader, Cllr Damian White (centre) with Deputy Leader Cllr Robert Benham and Cabinet Member for Environment, Cllr Osman Dervish with Havering street cleaning staff. Photo: Havering Council

Havering Council

Members of Havering Council's cabinet have approved budget plans that include improvements in street cleaning and road repairs, but scrapping free parking in some parts of the borough and a rise in council tax.

The plans, which were the focus of a cabinet meeting last night (Wednesday, February 13) will also see nearly £150 million pumped into building more “genuinely affordable” housing and other neighbourhood improvements.

This comes on top of a separate £10 million that has been earmarked to improve housing estates.

Council tax is proposed to rise by 3.25 per cent, the bulk of which will be used to meet rising costs of providing care and support for residents who are more vulnerable which includes senior citizens, people with disabilities and young people who are deemed at risk.

The rise is lower than the maximum 4.99pc allowed by Government and it will mean that Havering’s share of council tax for the average Band D property will increase by less than £1 a week from £1363.83 to £1408.15.

If approved by full council next week, the budget will see an extra £400,000 put into street cleaning which will see the frequency in residential streets increased from once every three weeks to fortnightly.

Around £250,000 is also expected to be spent on additional CCTV across the borough.

However the proposed budget will also see free car parking in Hornchurch, Upminster and Elm Park scrapped.

Other parking proposals include increasing charges from £1.50 for two hours to £2 for one hour, introducing a flat £1.50 charge to park on Sundays and a residents-only parking scheme in a 1km zone around town centres.

Councillor Damian White, the leader of Havering Council said: “This is a budget that responds to and acts on the issues that matter to our community the most.

“It is an ambitious budget that will bring significant improvements to all parts of the borough with investment in neighbourhoods, job creation and more genuinely affordable housing.”

If approved by full council on February 27, the budget will see £13.2 million saved in 2019/20 rising to a total of £40.4 million by 2022/23.

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