Council tax to rise by 5.1%

3 Apr 18

The average council tax bill in England in 2018-19 will rise by 5.1% compared to the last financial year, the government has announced.

Figures from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government have shown that average Band D council tax will increase by £81- rising to £1,671.

Out of the 152 councils that provide social care, 148 will use some or all of the flexibility to raise council tax by 3% through the adult social care precept, introduced in 2016-17, the government statistical release said.

This precept will account for £30 of the average Band D council tax bill in 2018-19.

Lord Porter, Local Government Association chair, said: “Since 2010, council tax bills have risen by less than inflation and other key household bills.

“But faced with severe funding pressures, many councils feel they are being left with little choice but to ask residents to pay more to help them try and protect their local services.”

Although, he added some councils may still have to cut back services.

“Many councils are now beyond the point where council tax income can be expected to plug the growing funding gaps they face,” Lord Porter explained.

Shadow communities secretary Andrew Gwynne said: “Over the last eight years, council budgets have been reduced by 50% and services cut, with local people forced to pick up the slack as council tax bills soar.”

Local government minister Rishi Sunak, said: “We recognise the importance of keeping bills down for hard working people, but also the pressures that local services are under.

“That’s why we’re providing a real terms increase in resources to councils over the next 2 years, more freedom and fairness, and greater certainty to plan and secure value for money.”

CIPFA highlighted last month council tax was heading for the biggest hike in 14 years, according to the responses of 276 in the organisation’s annual survey.

Government figures showed council tax increased by 5.9% in 2004-5.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies has said that even if council tax revenues increased by 4.5% a year, adult social care spending could amount to half of all revenue from local taxes by 2035.

Adam Corlett, of the Resolution Foundation, wrote for PF and called for council tax to be replaced.  

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