A report to today’s Executive Board sets out proposals for increasing the prices to allotment holders. There are nearly 4,000 rented plots and a waiting list of around 1,500, which reflects the growing popularity of allotment gardening in recent years.
The projected costs to the Council associated with providing and administering allotment facilities in 2012/13 was £178k, resulting in a net subsidy of £133k each year.
A consultation document was distributed to relevant allotment stakeholders, with a view to making the service break even. From the options considered, nearly 60% of those responding were supportive of a price rise with the overwhelming majority in favour of the option to apply a price increase evenly to all plot holders, including those entitled to concessions. There were a number of comments expressing concern at the overall level of price increase proposed and that concessions were available primarily on an age related basis.
It is proposed to retain the current level of concessions for those who are registered disabled, unemployed, a full time student or in receipt of pension credit. It is proposed to introduce a new 20% concession allotment charges. for those in receipt of a state pension rather than eradicate this concession altogether.
The report recommends that there is a phased price increase over three years commencing in autumn 2014. By budget savings the deficit has now been reduced to a projected £80k a year, which the proposed price increases will eliminate by 2016/17.
Proposed charges in 2014/15 are as follows:
|Full plot (250sq.m)||£27.00||£46.40||£58.00|
|Half Plot (125sm)||£13.50||£23.20||£27.00|
|Quarter Plot (62.5sq. m)||£6.75||£11.60||£13.50|