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Huntingdonshire District Council. “2011 Budget Input Consultation” Using SIMALTO Modelling. Research For Today Ltd August 2010. Objectives.

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huntingdonshire district council
Huntingdonshire District Council

“2011 Budget Input Consultation” Using SIMALTO Modelling

Research For Today Ltd

August 2010

objectives
Objectives

Huntingdon District Council wanted to know resident priorities about the allocation of council tax between various services in 2011. The council was facing having to make significant savings on some of its discretionary services over the next few years.

Which of current service levels/benefits could be reduced and cause least ‘displeasure’ among residents?

Would residents be willing to pay more council tax, above inflation if this was possible, to minimise cuts in services?

interviews conducted
Interviews Conducted

250 face-to-face interviews were conducted in all wards, proportional to their populations

interviews cont
Interviews cont.

The questionnaire was also put on the internet.

Response was :-

391 Residents

143 Staff

34 Business persons/Stakeholders

Unless otherwise stated figures in this presentation are for the in-home resident sample.

what services were shown
Voluntary grants

Local transport

Healthy activities

Leisure centres

Country parks

Play areas

Anti-social behaviour

Licensing

CCTV

Investigating fraud

Planning services

Customer services

Magazine

Council website

Homes quality

Disabled homes

Homelessness

Affordable homes

Town centre grants

Business grants

Street cleaning

Grounds maintenance

Climate, environment

What services were shown?
slide6

Costed SIMALTO Grid

0

1

2

4

0

2

3

6

0

1

2

0

10

12

0

3

8

0

2

6

slide7

Unacceptable

0

1

2

4

0

2

3

6

0

1

2

0

10

12

0

3

8

0

2

6

slide8
Each resident asked to ‘spend’ 4 lots of points totalling 80.

One point = approx. £50,000

Current service = 120 points

Left hand side of grid = approx. £6m saving to council.

satisfaction with personal choice scenarios
Satisfaction with Personal Choice Scenarios

Few unhappy at their 3rd priorities of 60 points, a £3m saving.

Only 8% unhappy with the current service – one of the lowest ‘dissatisfaction’ rates ever recorded on 130 studies over 7 years.

scenarios chosen when informed of council tax impact
Scenarios Chosen When Informed of Council Tax Impact

70% willing to pay at least £20 more tax to avoid largest cuts.

Elderly least keen on paying extra tax for less savings.

scenarios chosen when informed of council tax impact2
Scenarios Chosen When Informed of Council Tax Impact

Web staff more keen to avoid largest service cuts.

example summary data
Example Summary Data

Attribute 7) Nuisance investigation

choice prediction between consensus optimum budgets
% Choice Prediction Between Consensus Optimum Budgets

71% predicted to pay at least £20 extra tax avoid largest service cuts scenario.

Little difference between samples.

summary 1 information
Summary 1 - Information

To maintain the current levels of these services, council tax would need to increase by more than Central Government guidelines

Only 8% of residents were dissatisfied with the current service they received from Huntingdonshire Council.

(One of the lowest dissatisfaction measures recorded in over 130 similar consultations for other councils)

summary 2 payment for services
Summary 2 – Payment for services

70% of respondents were willing to pay £20 or more per year extra tax to minimise the potential cuts the council could introduce.

Faced with the choice of 5 optimally deduced budget service allocations, 71% were predicted to chose the four of these that incurred at least a £20 increase in council tax and avoided the largest service cuts scenario.

summary 3 service reductions causing least displeasure saving up to 2m
Summary 3 – Service Reductions Causing Least Displeasure.Saving up to £2m.

Council magazine – Stop, electronic only

Council website – 75% fewer pages

Planning services – ‘Bare minimum’

Council access – Reduce opening hours

Affordable homes grants – Reduce by 17

Grounds maintenance – cut 8 times / year

Climate change – reduce environment schemes

CCTV – Record only

Town centres – Halve grants

Countryside parks – Close 4 small ones

summary 4 further service reductions causing least displeasure
Summary 4 – Further Service Reductions Causing Least Displeasure.

Saving up to £3m.

Voluntary grants – Only 9000 get advice

Leisure centres – reduce hours

Play areas – reduce inspections

Licensing – Minimum service

Homelessness – 400 get advice

Saving up to £4m

Local transport – No new safety schemes

Countryside parks – Minimum standards

CCTV – Cease

Fraud investigation – Reduce

Council access – Close 4 service centres

Homes quality – Stop help to owners

Affordable homes – 34 fewer

Business support – Reduce

summary 5 services which should not be reduced if at all possible
Summary 5 – Services which should not be reduced if at all possible

Healthy activity support

Anti-social behaviour, nuisance prevention

Home grants for disabled persons

Street cleaning