COUNCIL taxes in Hampshire are likely to be frozen for a record fourth year running next year, even though council leader Ken Thornber has expressed disappointment with the expected level of funding support from central government.

He said: “We are most disappointed that although there was an announcement in Parliament yesterday, we still don’t have the full detailed information from Government.

“We knew that the outlook for local government finance was likely to continue to be difficult and the headline figures show that once again, Hampshire will have the biggest reduction in grant compared to other county councils.

“We are disappointed in the further grant reductions, but we were expecting this, and we are confident that our forward planning will stand us in good stead to tackle the financial challenges over the next two years, although there are tough times ahead for the next decade.

“The announcement shows just how significant the national deficit reduction programme is and the challenges we face in continuing to deliver quality services at lowest cost to Hampshire’s council tax payers.

“However, I can report that the early action taken by Hampshire County Council to transform services and create new opportunities for joint working and business development in response to this tough financial climate, has helped protect front-line resources and delivered our target of £100million savings.

“This foresight and planning ahead has put Hampshire in a very strong position.”