Croydon’s fast growing and changing population is set to increase pressure on the council’s budget, prompting an increase in council tax next year. 

A report setting out the financial outlook of Croydon Council is due to be discussed by cabinet today (September 24).

A report on the The Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) 2018-22 has been put together by Cllr Simon Hall, cabinet member for finances and resources.

The MTFS is how the council sets out the budget in terms of four years.

In the report Cllr Hall said: “Our unique position in London sees us funded as an out of London borough but we face the pressures and demands of an inner London borough.

“We have the pressures created by having a fast growing fast changing population. We also have the pressures created by our unique status as the gateway authority for Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children (UASC), the issue of No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) and housing pressures, alongside insufficient funding to provide high quality schools and special schools.

“All of which puts increased pressure on our already stretched budgets and services.”

The aim of the strategy is to set out how the council will tackle financial challenges, rather than provide a detailed budget for the next four years.

In the past eight years the council’s reserves have depleted by £20 million from £57.7 million in 2010/11 to £37.6million in 2017/18.

The MTFS assumes that council tax will increase by 4% next year.

As well as council tax the report states that business rates and development are other ways the council hopes to get a balanced budget.

Following the inadequate rating of Croydon’s children’s services the council has invested more than £10m to make improvements.

It is expected an additional £7m will be needed in 2019/20.

The report states: “We have assumed in this strategy that demand for children’s social care services will increase at 1.5% in real terms per annum over the life of the MTFS, based on the projected GLA population projections over the life of the strategy.”

The cabinet meeting will take place at Croydon Town Hall from 6.30pm this evening (September 24).