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Council 'will need more government funding'

Council 'will need more government funding'

Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 6:15pm 5th June 2020. (Updated at 6:32pm 5th June 2020)

By Richard Whitehouse, Local Democracy Reporter 

Cornwall Council has said that local authorities will need double the amount of money that has been provided by the government to cover costs from the covid-19 pandemic.

County Hall has so far received £34.56 million from the Government to cover additional costs caused by coronavirus.

But council leader Julian German has said it hopes it will be getting at least two more packages of funding to meet the shortfall.

Last week it was revealed that the council is currently facing a shortfall of around £28m with its total costs from the pandemic topping £62m.

Cllr German said yesterday that the issue was not unique to Cornwall and other councils would also need additional support from the government.

He said: “I was on a meeting with leaders of south west councils earlier in the week and it was very much felt that we have received two tranches of funding and we will need at least two more.

“We need double the amount of funding we have been given so far and that is the feeling across the south west councils.

“We are looking forward to the next round of funding coming through.

“There probably will be future funding from government as it is granted that not only are we funding, quite rightly, tackling the coronavirus and keeping residents safe but also losing a lot of income because of the situation and it is a challenge of providing public services with that loss of income which is absolutely huge.”

While the council has had £34.56m to cover its own additional costs of coronavirus it has, along with all local authorities, had further funding which has been handed to local businesses and other areas.

This includes a £6.8m infection control fund for care homes, £92.5m in business rates relief, £4.76m for a council tax hardship fund and £20,000 rough sleeping emergency funding.

Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly has also had £285.68m in grants for local businesses, £13.67m for a discretionary grant fund, £6m has been provided to support transport links to the Isles of Scilly and a £180,000 covid bus services support grant.

In total the government has provided £444.22m to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly to help during the coronavirus outbreak.

Cherilyn Mackrory, MP for Truro and Falmouth, said: “I am pleased that this Government continues to recognise Cornwall and our unique needs as part of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This is an unprecedented response to difficult times and I will continue to do all I can to work with colleagues to ensure Cornwall gets its fair share of moneys available as the Government continues to monitor and review the support packages.”

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