Sunday, January 24, 2021

Selling the family silver?

(with acknowledgements to Harold Macmillan)

Those with an interest in such matters might find the latest HDC '2021/22 Budget and the Medium Term Financial Strategy to 2024/25' report of interest, especially section 9 'Potential decisions to close the budget gaps', which identifies three potential housing sites currently owned by the council: Rookwood, Broadbridge Heath running track, and the Drill Hall.

This is expanded on in Appendix H (Section 1.12) of the above report, where the Chief Finance Office opines that "Councillors either need to carry out the three development projects highlighted in the budget report or plan to make substantial cuts to customer facing services by the middle of the decade. These cuts are likely to include closing valued non-statutory services such as the Capitol theatre, Horsham Museum, community support services or nature reserves, or dramatically reducing the quality of Horsham District Council’s excellent statutory services such as Development Management and Environmental Health."

Of course, there is also the possibility (and pleasant thought) of a significant change of government in 2024 to one with an enhanced social conscience (not that difficult with respect to the current lot), but that would not be something that a chief financial officer would be expected to opine on!  So back to the family silver?

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