Tomorrow is the last day for Isle of Wight residents to log on and help shape next year's council budget.
Last month the Isle of Wight Council launched its annual budget consultation that includes an online simulator which allows people to suggest where savings should be made and identify areas where they feel spending should be prioritised.
The budget simulator – which will be available until August 6 - can be viewed alongside a budget survey at www.iwight.com/haveyoursay
During a similar exercise in 2011, suggestions made by the public using the simulator included reducing internal costs, supporting tourism, retaining current car parking charges and freezing allowances for councillors.
In response to these suggestions, the council delivered over £15 million internal savings through increased efficiencies. A successful bid for £4 million to support tourism was made and a new destination management organisation set up to provide a strategic approach to marketing the Island as a tourism destination.
The council also froze car parking charges for the fourth year running and some elements of councillor's allowances were removed by the independent remuneration panel that reviews them each year.
The views of those taking part in the current survey and various budget workshops that have been held with representative groups will be considered as the budget proposals take shape ahead of the annual budget setting meeting in February next year. This will include presenting the feedback from the consultation to the budget review that will be part of September’s Cabinet and Full Council meetings.
Due largely to reduced funding from government, the council has had to address a funding gap of £33 million. It will have found 80 per cent of this by the end of the current financial year and needs to find a further £2.5 million in 2013/14.
However the council is also pointing out that whilst this may be a smaller amount than in previous years, budget forecasts indicate a potential budget gap of £22m that will need to be met by 2016-17.