National Audit Office assesses pandemic's effects on local government finance

posted on 12 March 2021, updated on 01 January 0001

The National Audit Office (NAO) has published a report which provides an overview of the impact that COVID-19 has had and will have on authorities' financial sustainability. During the pandemic, local authorities have made a significant contribution to the national response to the pandemic, working to protect local communities and businesses, while continuing to deliver existing services.

The pandemic has in turn placed significant pressure on local authorities' finances, which in many cases were already under strain going into the pandemic. 75% of irrecoverable council tax and business rates losses in 2020-21 will be covered by government.

Whilst not directly linked to council tax, the report provides practitioners responsible for the levying, collection, recovery, and enforcement of monies owing to local authorities with a clear indication of the significant financial pressures that local authorities are and will be facing over the coming months and years.

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