A GOVERNMENT funding boost will help deliver high-quality services to local communities in South Craven, says Skipton and Ripon MP Julian Smith.

He welcomed a new funding settlement for English local authorities that he believes means a real-terms increase in available resources over the next two years.

He said councils across North Yorkshire would have access to over £200 billion from 2015 to 2020 to deliver local services.

Mr Smith said the settlement gave councils additional financial freedoms to deliver services for their most vulnerable residents while protecting council tax payers from excessive increases in their bills.

said: “This is great news for our area. I am pleased that the Secretary of State has recognised thehe challenges for local authorities working in rural areas, and I welcome the significant increase in spending power for North Yorkshire County Council.”

For the coming financial year (2018/2019), North Yorkshire will have Core Spending Power of £390.7 million, an increase of £12.2 million or 3.2 per cent.

In addition, £16 million would be made available to councils providing services in rural areas, taking the total Rural Services Grant to £81 million - the highest it has ever been and a recognition of the cost of providing local services in sparsely populated areas.

For North Yorkshire, this additional funding amounts to £3.2 million.