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Council Plan 2016-2019 sets out vision for Craven

Craven District Council has set out its vision for the next three years in a new Council Plan.

The council's policy committee approved the plan at its meeting on February 16, 2016.

It sets out the council's vision for Craven, the priorities in achieving this vision and the actions and projects needed to address these priorities.

The overarching priorities or priority themes have been reduced to three from four, in order to focus on the most important issues.

The 'Working with Communities' and 'Greener Craven' priorities have been combined into a new 'Resilient Communities' priority, focusing on reducing health and wellbeing inequalities, enabling community groups to achieve their ambitions, reducing waste to landfill and increasing re-use and recycling, and making Craven cleaner, safer, and greener.

The existing priorities of 'Enterprising Craven', which aims to facilitate economic growth across Craven, and 'Financial Sustainability', ensuring a self-sustainable council, will remain.

Priorities within 'Enterprising Craven' include enabling the provision of 290 homes per year across the district, stimulating business growth with new employment land, improved transport, business support services and high quality broadband, and improving the economic vitality of Craven's market towns and villages.

'Financial Sustainability' concentrates on eliminating the reliance on the Government's revenue support grant, which is being reduced to zero by 2020. It includes actions such as prioritising expenditure, generating additional income, and maximising the council's assets.

Councillor Richard Foster, council leader, said: "This plan sets out our vision for Craven and focuses on the top priorities for improvement. It does not include everything the council will do - but it focuses on those issues of most importance.

"We have agreed that our vision is for Craven to be an increasingly prosperous place, with strong and vibrant communities that celebrate their unique rural and urban settings, and where all residents enjoy a good quality of life.

"We asked members of the public whether we had the right priorities, as part of the budget consultation process for 2016/17, and the overall response was positive. However we have made some changes to our priorities in order to concentrate on the most crucial areas."

The Council Plan will now be delegated to the chief executive of the council to approve its design and format, update and agree timescales for delivery, and agree performance indicators.