Adult social care 2021/22

Adult social care precept

The Local Government Settlement for 2021/22 has given powers for local authorities with adult social care responsibilities to raise Council Tax above the referendum limit by up to 3%. The income generated by this is ring-fenced specifically for adult social care.

It is not known whether councils will have the power to make further increases to the precept in future years. Therefore, in our current medium-term financial planning, we are not assuming any further increases.

Improved Better Care Fund Grant

The Improved Better Care Fund grant is distributed to authorities with social care responsibilities based on a formula that considers need and Council Tax raising ability.

As part of the Chancellor’s Spring Budget back in March 2017, further funding for authorities with adult social care responsibilities was announced. This took the form of an additional Improved Better Care Fund Grant.

The government requires both grants to be pooled in the Better Care Fund but used for adult social care purposes. This means that decisions on how the money is spent are made jointly with the NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in Devon. The government has stated the deployment of this is for the benefit of health and social care overall but used for the purposes of improving the overall health and social care system including reducing delayed transfers of care.

For 2021/22 the government has announced that the original Improved Better Care Fund Grant will continue along with the Additional Improved Better Care Fund Grant.

The table below sets out the value of the three grant elements:

17/18 18/19 19/20 20/21 21/22 22/23 and future years
£m £m £m £m £m £m
Original improved better care fund 0.2 10.2 19.7 19.7 19.7 19.7
Additional improved better care fund 15.2 10.2 5.0 8.6 8.6 8.6
Winter pressures 0.0 0.0 3.6 0.0 0.0 0.0
Total 15.4 20.4 28.3 28.3 28.3 28.3

No announcement has yet been made on the level of grant the authority can expect beyond 2021/22. The MTFS assumes the grant ongoing at £28 million, but this is far from certain.