Thursday, 11 February 2010

East Riding of Yorkshire Council increases council tax by 1.5%

From the Hull Daily Mail:

Households in the East Riding are set to face an increase of at least 1.5 per cent in their council tax bills from April.

The increase in the authority's element of the council tax was agreed at a meeting in Beverley this afternoon.

It means the average Band D household will pay an extra £17 for council services, bringing the bill up to £1,212.

The final amount will be fixed once the police and fire authorities have agreed their precepts.

East Riding Council leader Councillor Stephen Parnaby said the ruling Conservative group had decided against implementing a three per cent tax increase, as recommended by senior officers because of the impact of the recession.

He said: "There is no doubt the economic downturn has affected everyone in some form or other and I believe a very modest increase, together with planning for the future throughout the year, is in everyone's best interests."

Cllr Parnaby said the council would use money from its reserves to subsidise the 1.5 per cent increase and ruled out any prospect of redundancies at the authority.

The planned increase was due to be 3%, and the council has only managed to limit the size of the increase by dipping into its reserves. If the council had taken my advice and the advice of some of its councillors, it would have looked at reducing the number of senior managers it employs and the pay packets they receive. This is one way Hull City Council has managed not to increase its share of the council tax.

Cllr Parnaby may think 1.5% is a ‘very modest increase’, but tell that to those who are experiencing pay cuts, or at best no pay increases at all.  Tell that to those with struggling businesses. ERYC definitely could and should do better.

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