Bassetlaw District Council agree to ‘unavoidable’ increase in Council Tax

Bassetlaw District Council.
Bassetlaw District Council.

Bassetlaw District Council have rubber-stamped proposals to increase Council Tax by 3.06 per cent.

The plans, for the financial year 2018/9, were approved at the March meeting of Full Council.

Bassetlaw residents will be asked to pay, on average, an additional £5 per year, or 10 pence per week, based on a Band D property.

But with around 51 per cent of properties in Bassetlaw falling into Band A, this equates to an increase of £3.33 per year, or 6 pence per week.

The 3.06 oer cent increase is projected to generate an additional £171k for Bassetlaw District Council when taking into account the rise in Council Tax and the additional number of homes in the district that will now be eligible to pay Council Tax, called the Council Tax base. This figure is also based on an estimated collection rate of 98 per cent.

The 3.06 per centrise only applies to the Bassetlaw portion of Council Tax (9 percent of the total amount of Council Tax), with Nottinghamshire County Council, Nottinghamshire County Council’s Adult Social Care Levy, Nottinghamshire Police, Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue and Parish Council elements also announcing increases.

Councillor June Evans, Cabinet Member for Finance at Bassetlaw District Council, said: “Each year, Council’s across the country are having their budgets squeezed because of prolonged cuts to Government funding. Bassetlaw is no exception and since 2010 we have been forced to shave more than £10m from our budgets.

“We continue to be asked to cut our spending in all areas and during the 2017/18 managed to make savings of £953k thanks to the hard work and diligence of officers here at Bassetlaw.

“However, an increase in Council Tax is sadly unavoidable and the proposal for an increase of 3.06 per centwas agreed by Councillors on Thursday (March 8).

“Despite these unavoidable increases and mounting financial pressures, we will again deliver a balanced budget for 2018/19 without any loss to frontline services, but the same cannot be said of some of our fellow Local Authorities.

“Earlier this year, Northamptonshire County Council could not achieve a balanced budget and brought in a section 114 notice, which effectively bans all spending with the exception of essential services.

“This is a stark warning for all Councils that a financial black hole is looming large should you not prepare for the future and at times make difficult decisions.

“Thankfully Bassetlaw is not in such a desperate position and we continue to receive a positive Value for Money assessment from the Government by staying at least one year ahead of the game and planning for every financial eventuality.”

“However, we must continue to make savings and will have to find a further £1.2m over the next four years, in addition to losing all Government funding by the end of the decade.”

Residents who are eligible to receive Council Tax Reduction will not see a significant change to their circumstances and will be asked to contribute the same percentage towards their bill with arrangements remaining the same as the last financial year.

Eligible working age claimants will continue to receive a maximum reduction of 88 per cent of their Council Tax bill, while working age vulnerable claimants will receive a maximum reduction of 95 per cent.