Careful spending council is recognised in national awards

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PROVIDING taxpayers with value for money and tight financial control has seen South Northants Council scoop a Finance Team of the Year award.

This month, SNC’s council tax collection rate and the prompt settling of its debts, grabbed the judges attention at the glitzy Local Government Chronicle Awards at the Grosvenor Hotel in Park Lane.

Council leader Mary Clarke (Cons, Old Stratford) said after cutting out £2 million from the budget through shared services with Cherwell District Council, the finance team had consistently displayed a high standard.

She added: “ I am delighted that the SNC Finance team has once again been recognised and rewarded by winning the LGC 2012 award.

“This represents a truly fantastic achievement and recognises the strength of a team which, in my opinion, consistently delivers successful finance solutions across a broad range of challenges facing local government today.”

Judges recognised SNC paid its invoices within six days - down two thirds since 2009, compared to the national average of 19 days.

At a time when household finances are tight the council was also seen as value for money with its services costing £123.81 per person each year, compared to the national average of £142.54.

SNC’s council tax collection rate has also reached an all time high of 99.3 per cent.

Councillor Ian McCord, (Cons, Cosgrove and Grafton), cabinet member for resources said: “I’ve always known about the quality of our finance team and I am delighted that they are being given national recognition.

“I would like to extend my warmest congratulations to them all. They have set themselves a high bar and I am sure they can continue to live up to their success.”