Sudden profit makes room for the budget
The budget was on the board’s committee table on Tuesday. Mayor Sis van den Bos was able to report positive news: instead of 2.2 million euros, “only” 330,000 euros will have to be drawn from the general reserve over the next four years to balance the budget.
Nice windfall, but how strong is the government’s commitment that the money will really come? Mayor Sis van den Bos reassured committee members: “We are taking a responsible risk.”
The expected fiscal consolidation is due to a higher contribution from the central government. Until 2025, the municipality will receive between five tons and an additional one million euros each year. Moreover, additional windfall gains are expected because the municipality is in the form of subsidy municipality status. However, this additional amount has yet to be confirmed, so the county, as a moderator, has advised against including the feature in the budget just yet. This led to the emergence of some question marks among the members of the Committee on Tuesday evening? Because it is wise to include it already and shouldn’t there be a Plan B if it doesn’t move forward? Mayor Sis van den Bos: We have an ambitious budget to match the changing and growing Urk. We jump on a large scale from less than twenty thousand to thirty thousand. This is a fundamentally different municipality and also requires a different device. We have to take the resources we expect to have. The risks are limited and we have discussed them at length with the governorate. It’s a responsible risk and of course there is a plan B, but we don’t assume we need it. We must always remain vigilant about the expenses we incur.”
There were also questions from the committee about staffing. Hart voor Urk recently made a suggestion for this and wanted to know what had happened to him. In it, the party, with the support of the majority, called for a critical look at hiring third parties. According to Mayor Van den Bos, the proposal was prompted at the time by a budget deficit that no longer existed. But that doesn’t mean we haven’t done anything with it. We should always be critical of spending, especially when it comes to government costs. But such a large, growing municipality with ambitious projects also requires a changing administrative apparatus. Business is now on hold due to staff shortages. We have to make sure we handle things properly, and that requires ability. We want to reduce recruitment costs by more than a million, because we are not deaf to the noise made by the board.
The budget will be discussed again at the next city council meeting in November.
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