Breckland council uses millions from reserves to cover funding gap

Rob Garratt Breckland Council has pulled an extra �4.5m out of its reserve coffers to cover a funding gap left by money tied up in collapsed Icelandic banks that may not be returned.

Rob Garratt

Breckland Council has pulled an extra �4.5m out of its reserve coffers to cover a funding gap left by money tied up in collapsed Icelandic banks that may not be returned.

But the council's chief executive Trevor Holden has pledged that no major projects will be affected, despite the decision move extra money from the council's reserves to cover the shortfall of more than �10m.

Yesterday Breckland's full council rubberstamped plans to use up to �4.58m from their capital reserves, a special measure authorised only after the council wrote to the Secretary of State.

However, Mr Holden pledged that this figure was no reflection on how much the authority is expected to reclaim from the banks - so far only �1.25m has been reclaimed from a �12m investment - and promised that no council services would be affected.

“Any loss of revenue has already been accounted for in setting the budget. There's not a capital project that's just been wiped out because of this,” said Mr Holden.

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He stressed a legal battle was currently under way by the Local Government Association, which represents each of the 127 British authorities caught out with a combined �950m invested in Iceland, to cap losses at �2m.

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