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Welcome

It’s a pleasure to be introducing the first Wokingham Borough News since being elected as Leader of the Council. In my first speech to councillors, I raised concerns about how we engage with you, and I know there’s much work to do to improve this.

This magazine is just one of our tools for this, but we want to make sure it’s doing what you want. On the inside back page you’ll find a feedback form asking you what you think of it and what you’d like in future editions. We’ve extended this survey from the last edition because some of you in Earley didn’t receive it. We, and our distribution company, apologise for this. If you live in another part of the Borough and also didn’t receive this magazine in December, please email: communications@wokingham.gov.uk

This year’s budget was set last month (February) but we continue to face difficult challenges. We receive no money from the main government grant, which means we depend more on the money raised from your council tax than other councils do. Find out more about this year’s budget in the centre pages of this magazine (16, 17 and 18) and also discover exactly what it takes to set one (page 15).

This is an exciting few months for the Wokingham Town Centre regeneration with Peach Place nearly finished, more great

retailers opening, and Elms Field’s transformation steaming ahead. See pages 9 and 10 for more details.

And April is also the start of your new food waste recycling scheme (page 7) which will run weekly alongside your normal household waste and recycling kerbside collections.

Remember you can keep up-todate with our latest news on our dedicated website at: http://news. wokingham.gov.uk. This is where all our news, videos and photos are in one place for you to enjoy at any time you like.

You can also like us on Facebook (facebook. com/ wokinghamboroughcouncil) or follow us on Twitter (@WokinghamBC).

If you have any questions or comments, please do email me at: Julian.McGhee-Sumner@ wokingham.gov.uk

Cllr Julian McGhee-Sumner Leader of the Council