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Source: City of Coventry

Published Tuesday, 22 December 2020

The Government will not reimburse Coventry City Council for all of the income it expects to lose as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Councils have already been told that they will not receive reimbursement for any commercial income they generate. In addition, government will now only pay a proportion of compensation for income lost from services such as planning and car parking.

The Council has provided its latest return to the government, but as part of this process it has to make an adjustment for losses that it is expected to absorb and then it is reimbursed for only 75p in every pound.

So far, the Council has lost an estimated £6m in income from these services due to the knock-on effect of Covid. But it will receive only £3.6m from the government.

Cllr Richard Brown, Cabinet Member for Strategic Finance and Resources, said: “The ongoing Covid-19 crisis remains a cause for concern – and now we see that despite previous guarantees the government are expecting the Council to divert money to cover a significant proportion of income losses.

“We are doing all that we can to bolster all aspects of Council services and are diverting funds to support businesses.”

He added: “I’m not surprised that the Government has failed to live up to its pledge to reimburse Councils for the losses incurred as a result of Covid-19. The human and public health impacts of the pandemic have been widely reported and some of these can be expected to continue for the foreseeable future. As expected, Coventry is having to pick up the costs.”

“Given the huge uncertainties going forward, it is difficult to provide robust financial planning but for the time being we have given a commitment to protect frontline services and balance the Council budget in April 2021.”

MIL OSI United Kingdom