Council tax bills set for biggest increase in a decade

posted on 06 March 2017, updated on 06 March 2017

CIPFA's annual survey has found that council tax in England is set to rise by an average of 4% next year – the biggest increase in a decade.

Bills for an average bank D property will rise by £60.94 to £1,590.53.

Councils in England have been permitted to increase the social care precept by 3%, up from the 2% previously allowed on top of the 1.99% annual increase allowed for general, non-ring-fenced council tax.

CIPFA’s survey, which received responses from two thirds of councils in England, found that 95% of councils with social care responsibilities will be setting the precept rate at least 2%, while 70% will be taking full advantage of the new front-loading flexibility and levying a 3% increase.

The income raised across England from the precept is expected to be £554m, 89% of the total possible amount of £624m.

Sean Nolan, Director for Local Government, CIPFA, said:

The fact that we are facing the single highest council tax increase in a decade is all the more remarkable because it comes after six years (2010/11 to 2015/16) of very low increases, actively encouraged by government, who until last year had offered a council tax freeze grant if councils did not raise theirs at all.

The subsequent removal of this freeze grant shows a clear shift in public policy in general, but also a reflection of the strains being caused by social care pressures. We can expect these levels of increase to continue at least for next year.

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