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Powys population set to fall

 
Created on 03/10/2016 @ 07:37
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The number of people living in Powys is set to fall over the next 25 years according to projections released that show funding pressures will continue for a generation.

New figures issued by the Office of National Statistics today project the county’s population to fall from nearly 133,000 in 2014 to 122,400 by 2039 – the largest fall in Wales, with a significant increase in the percentage of over 75’s during the same period.

Cabinet Member for Finance, Councillor Wynne Jones said it could have a “very serious impact on the county’s level of local government services in the coming years”.

Powys receives more than 70 per cent of its funding from the Welsh Government and is based on a formula that is heavily based on population projections, with key indicators particularly linked to school pupil numbers.

A projected fall in the number of births per year from 1,200 to 900 is particularly worrying for officials as any fall in the under 16’s will have a disproportionate impact on the council’s annual funding and have a severe effect on future school funding levels.

“Powys has experienced a succession of disappointing financial settlements in recent years and news that population projections show a decline in numbers will do little to change that trend,” said Cllr Jones. “Falling pupil numbers have already had a considerable impact on our schools and their financial sustainability and today’s figures will do nothing to help.

“Unfortunately the area where Powys is projected to see an increase, the percentage of the population the over 75’s, does not influence the funding formula despite the cost of providing services for them being a significant part of the council’s budget.   

“The council will continue to lobby the Welsh Government for a fundamental review of the funding formula to ensure that the county has adequate funding to deliver services in the years to come. Today’s population projections make that work all the more important,” he added.

KEY POINTS

·      The Powys population is projected to fall by 7.7% from 132,700 in 2014 to122,400 in 2039. This is the largest projected fall among the 22 Welsh local authority areas.

·      It is projected that over the 25-year period the number of males in the Powys population will fall by 7.7% and the number of females will fall by 7.8%.

·      The number of births per year in Powys is projected to fall from 1,200 in 2014/15 to 900 in 2038/39.

·      The number of deaths per year in Powys is projected to rise from 1,500 in 2014/15 to 1,800 in 2038/39.

·      Net Natural Change (the difference between births and deaths) is projected to increase from -300 in 2014/15 to -900 in 2038/39.

·      Powys is projected to become increasingly old, with people 75 and older increasing from 11% of the population to 23%.

·      Net inward migration is projected to continue with around 100 more people moving into Powys than moving out each year.

 

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