Residents across Tendring have a chance to say how they want their Council to spend their money.

People are now being asked to give their ideas on priorities for where the cash should go – and where they believe savings should come from.

It is the fifth year that Tendring District Council (TDC) has gone out to the public offering the opportunity to influence the budget for the coming financial year.

Responses in the past have helped shape the annual budget with a number of actions taken by the Council directly due to feedback from residents.

It has meant that a balanced budget has continued to be set – and significant savings of £7.6 million have already been achieved.

However, Alan Goggin, TDC’s Cabinet Member for Finance and Transformation, is warning that more savings are needed with finance remaining a considerable challenge for the Council.

“Initial estimates mean that we are looking at possible further savings of up to £5.5 million in the future,” he said. “This is because we face on-going reductions in Government Funding.”

The Council has a “YOU CHOOSE” feature on its website which makes it easy for people to get involved.

It allows residents to adjust the Council’s spending – and they can immediately see what impact it would have on the budget before they make their final choice of how cash is allocated.

This year the model starts with a £2.01 million deficit for 2015/16. You will need to reduce this to zero – or have a council tax increase of no more than 2 per cent as you work through the options.

The exercise costs the Council nothing as “YOU CHOOSE” has been made available free of charge by YouGov and the Local Government Association.

A summary of the results will be presented to the Council’s Cabinet.

“We are spending your money so we want to hear back from you where you want to see it spent,” added Cllr Goggin. “I can assure you that it is not easy to balance the books while still providing all the various services we expect and enjoy.”

All you need to do is to click on the “YOU CHOOSE” logo on the Council’s website, http://www.tendringdc.gov.uk/consultation and follow the instructions.