RESIDENTS and businesses in Winchester are set to be asked to give their views on the city council’s five-point priority list for the coming years – only nine months after the policies were last refreshed.

The key areas highlighted in the draft Council Plan 2020-25 are climate change, housing, economy, healthy lifestyles and delivery of important public services.

Members of Winchester City Council’s cabinet were assessing the “high level” document, which sets out what the local authority wants to achieve as well as informing other strategies

Following approval of the documentation by council leaders at the meeting on Wednesday (October 23) , a five-week consultation was due to be launched for stakeholders and the community to have their say up until November 29.

At present, the council is listing its priorities for 2020 to 2025 under the following headings:

  • Tackling the climate emergency and creating a greener district
  • Homes for all
  • Vibrant local economy
  • Living well
  • Your services. Your voice.

A report from council leader Cllr Lucille Thompson to cabinet said: “The current Council Plan 2017-20 was adopted by the council on January 16, 2019 and runs until March 31, 2020.

“There have been some significant changes at the council since this time including a change in administration following the local elections in May and the declaration of a climate emergency in June.

“The Council Plan 2020-25 sets out the council’s key ambitions for the coming five years and focusses on five priority outcomes.”

It adds: “The council could choose not to have a Council Plan or not refresh the current Council Strategy.

“It is the Council Plan that sets out the key delivery programme for the council and enables effective business planning and programme management for teams. Not to have a Plan is not recommended.”

A six-page consultation document outlines the challenges the council faces, what it wants to achieve and how it plans to do this.

The draft Council Plan is due be considered by scrutiny committee at a meeting on November 27, as part of the consultation, before a final version goes back to cabinet the following month for approval and recommendation to full council.

If all goes to schedule, councillors will decide whether to adopt the final version of the policy document at a meeting on January 15, 2020.