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Donegal County Council passes revenue budget for 2020

Budget passed after addition of Tidy Towns funding and a town centre revitalisation scheme

Donegal County Council passes 2017 budget with increased spending of €2.2m

Donegal County Council has passed a revenue budget of €154m for 2020.

Councillors passed the draft budget with the addition of a spend of €5,000 for Tidy Towns groups in each of the six municipal districts and the creation of a town centre revitalisation scheme.

The council passed the budget by a recorded vote of 27 votes to 2 by supporting the addition of the Tidy Towns and the town centre scheme after Chief executive Seamus Neely said both proposals could be added to the budget.

Only independent councillors Frank McBrearty and Cllr Michael Cholm Mac Giolla Easbuig voted against the budget.

The proposed budget was an increase on the €146m budget passed for 2019.

A capital budget of €159m is to be set out on Monday.

The budget will see the council spend €970 for every person who lives in the county next year.

Income has been boosted by an increase in the Local Property Tax income of €1.6m which was voted for by councillors in September, an increase in gross commercial rates income of €1,4m and an increase in funding from the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government of more than €800,000.

The council is to spend €72.5m on salaries, pensions and gratuities next year, up from €69.4m for 2019.

There is a proposed spending increase on housing maintenance of €500,000 which will increase the spend on housing to €5.5m.

Another €500,000 has been set aside for co-funding opportunities.

The Non-Principal Private Residence (NPPR), or holiday home tax, is expected to fall by €500,000. 

The council is also proposing to create a public lights and minor infrastructure fund of €2.2m.

An increase in income from commercial rates of €1.4m is also expected.

Payroll and staff costs at €59,411,747 make up 38% of the budget. The other spending is: pensions and gratuities €9,316,606 (6%), insurance, loan and financial charges €10,745,704 (7%), materials and equipment €9,514,024 (6%), contracts €23,550,091(15%), refunds and provision for bad debt €7,490,185 (5%), rent and rates €1,170,127 (1%), grants and contributions €5,567,995 (4%), RAS, long term leasing and HAP €3,997,284 (3%), energy €2,743,419 ( 2%), communications, postage and advertising €1,372,793 (1%), other €19,530,654 (13%).

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