PANDEMIC WILL COST COUNCIL £3MILLION IN LOST REVENUE – INCLUDING £1.3MILLION FROM LESIURE CENTRES

People not exercising after the COVID pandemic could cost the Isle of Wight council £1.3million in this financial year.

Following a long period where the council’s 1Leisure facilities were closed, under government restrictions, the services are now struggling to recover to pre-pandemic levels of activity.

Councillor Geoff Brodie highlighted at the council’s corporate scrutiny committee last week that leisure facilities and sports development areas are forecast to lose £1,299,000 in the financial year 2021/22. With an already budgeted deficit of £284,000 this could hit the council’s budget to the tune of £1,583,000.

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Leisure centres are not the only area where the council are forecasting a loss, primarily due to COVID. Other areas forecast to make a loss include:

  • Car parking (£1,126,000)
  • Amenities and theatre (£122,000)
  • Museums, archaeology and records office (£246,000)

The estimated net loss of income to the council in these 4 areas would be £2,937,000.

Chief executive of the Isle of Wight Council, John Metcalfe, said they knew the loss was going to happen and that was why the COVID contingency fund was introduced, to cover any pressures. The £14.2 million contingency fund was approved in the council’s latest budget to deal with the financial legacy left behind by the pandemic and any other risks that could occur in the next 3 years.

Mr Metcalfe said the purpose of the fund was to bridge the gap in income expenditure to cover some of the areas that had not recovered. As a proactive council, Mr Metcalfe said they were constantly reviewing the recovery position and seeing if there were any alternatives that could be made.

A government scheme was also introduced last year and has continued in the first quarter of this financial year, to replace 75p of every pound of lost income, which will be paid into the council’s accounts. Mr Metcalfe said the estimated compensation would be £400,000 but as the scheme only ran in the first quarter of the year, he was unsure if anymore money would be coming from the government.

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Loopy lil
Loopy lil
2 months ago

And the predicted floating bridge cost is?

Fedup
Fedup
2 months ago

So what’s different for any other business? Oh yes, other businesses have to depend on satisfied customers whereas the council depends on forcing money out of the tax payer, whatever the customer (CT payer thinks).
It would be a good idea if Metcalf & Co got their house in order, like others have to, and stop bleating.

Joe Blogs
Joe Blogs
2 months ago

Why is the council running leisure centres? This should have been the domain of the private sector.

Steve
Steve
Reply to  Joe Blogs
2 months ago

Think carpark think council
If theres a quid to steal they’ll do it

jen
jen
2 months ago

but they were given more than one gov hand out? noone bern doing anything costly through covid really…lots of volunteer help added in lets not forget.
the council are complete money wasters 100%.floating money pit anyone?
stop wasting and then no need too keep whining you’ve no money.services are cut roadside grass is looking awful(not seaclose obv)but out council tax still goes up.
shame on you for you ludicrous money wasting crazy ideas that will never work or help us islanders.

Steve
Steve
2 months ago

Stop spending on the floating bridge that way you wont lose anything
And then you don’t have to raise the taxes and carparking
Or is that just too hard for you lot to fathom out

Gullible Islander
Gullible Islander
2 months ago

So what was the 9 million from the government spent on? And I’m still waiting to hear back from the council on how some Harris fencing and a couple of refrigerated containers could possibly cost 700k at the start of the pandemic, at St Mary’s.

Jane
Jane
2 months ago

Until the council wakes up and puts staff in leisure centres on performance related pay like most leisure centres you will never have proactive staff. A lot of members have not received any communication from leisure service providers welcoming them back ! Certain members of staff upset customers through the pandemic by not protecting clients that were disabled and worried of catching covid by ensuring that all council policies were followed to the letter ! My advice get rid of duty managers they spend to much time sitting in offices doing nothing ! There are some staff carrying lazy staff and it needs a shake up !

truthouts
truthouts
2 months ago

Awful council spending all that time and effort doling out £100,000,000 of grants to Isle of Wight businesses during covid.

Maybe they should have kept a little back for themselves…

rodney burt
rodney burt
2 months ago

The time will come when we can’t blame COVID

stephen
stephen
Reply to  rodney burt
2 months ago

i dont blame covid, i blame the council

Dicky Daniels
Dicky Daniels
2 months ago

Get ready for huge poll tax increases, from council to cover usual negligence. Town councils will also put in record increases, particularly Ryde, who want to maintain its position as most expensive town council.

Gorob
Gorob
2 months ago

Its going to be another excuse to hike up council tax, parking charges, leisure charges, etc.
HAVE YOU SEEN HOW MANY LEASE CARS THEY HAVE SAT OUTSIDE COUNTY HALL.
We will all be paying for them!

tom
tom
Reply to  Gorob
2 months ago

my neighbour brings one home sometimes being a carer.bloody tax cheek.they use there own cars by choice and council carers will obv get perks.p poor

Ting tong from tooting
Ting tong from tooting
2 months ago

This covid virus has turned out to be one massive girt gravy train for the rich and certain politions and there mates !

 

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