CYNGOR Gwynedd has warned that service cuts and Council tax increases remain inevitable following today’s local government financial settlement announcement by the Welsh Government.

Welsh councils will receive an average budget increase of 7.9 per cent for 2023-24, but Cyngor Gwynedd’s increase will be 7 per cent. This means that the authority will be in a difficult position while trying to set a balanced budget and continuing to provide services for the most vulnerable in society.

Councillor Dyfrig Siencyn, Leader of Cyngor Gwynedd, said: "Since the Westminster Government's autumn budget we have anticipated that things will be bleak for us and today's announcement confirms that we will face a significant financial shortfall in 2023/24.

"At first glance, it appears that things will not be as bad as forecast a few weeks ago as Gwynedd will receive more money next year. But in reality, this settlement is among the worst in real terms that we as a Council have ever received.

"The costs of everything needed to provide local services for Gwynedd – such as energy, goods and labour – have increased by 11 per cent since the autumn, which is an additional cost of around £22million.

“At the same time the demand for services such as homelessness has shot up as a result of the cost of living crisis. The increase of £14million in the settlement is simply not sufficient to cover this.


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"So, we have no choice but to either cut services, increase Council Tax significantly or strike a responsible balance between the two."

Since the situation facing local government became apparent in the autumn, officers across all Cyngor Gwynedd departments have been looking at possible savings and cuts.

Now that the settlement has been announced, these options will be analysed early in the new year before Councillors decide what will be put into action from April 2023 onwards.

Councillor Siencyn added: "By law, Council members have to set a balanced budget at our meeting in March 2023 so there are very difficult decisions ahead of us over the next few weeks.

"We have faced financial challenges in the past but this is the most dramatic situation we have seen brought about by a combination of huge cost increases and enormous additional pressures due to the cost of living crisis, all hitting us within a very short period of time.

"Thanks to sound financial planning over the years, Cyngor Gwynedd’s position is relatively stable and we are determined to continue to protect our most vulnerable residents and key services.

"For example, the Council recently decided to allocate the additional income from increasing the Council Tax Premium on second homes to tackle homelessness.

“This means that new money will be available to pay for around half of the additional £6million we need to tackle homelessness – a problem which affects an increasing number of local people in all corners of the county.

“If it wasn't for this, we would have to raise the Council Tax for everyone by an additional 4 per cent on top of the increase we will have to introduce from April onwards to pay for homelessness services alone.

"Having said this, there is no doubt that extremely difficult decisions cannot be avoided across all service areas."

If you, or someone you know, is concerned about the effects of the cost of living crisis, there is information about help and support available on the Council's website. Go to: