Uttlesford council tax rise rumpus

UTTLESFORD councillors are being asked to approve a council tax rise of just over �4 a year for a Band D property. If approved, the increase of the district council s share would equate to a 2.9 per cent rise.  Leader of the council, Cllr Jim Ketteridge,

UTTLESFORD councillors are being asked to approve a council tax rise of just over �4 a year for a Band D property.

If approved, the increase of the district council's share would equate to a 2.9 per cent rise.

Leader of the council, Cllr Jim Ketteridge, said: "The proposed rise is on a level with the current rate of inflation and will allow the council to keep delivering services to residents and businesses in a very difficult economic climate.

"Government grants, which form a major part of council funding, are not keeping pace with inflation. For 2010/11, we will only receive a rise of a half of one per cent. This is a problem being experienced by many district councils and one which is likely only to become more serious in coming years.


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"The council is committed to continuing working with the community to give them high quality, value for money services."

Uttlesford Liberal Democrats believe a 2.9 per cent increase is too high and criticised the Conservatives for ignoring a proposal to consider setting an increase of two per cent or less.

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Group leader, Cllr Peter Wilcock, added that the proposed increase is in stark contrast to the zero per cent council tax increase pledged by Conservative leader David Cameron, and insisted that the council should not be demanding tax increases that it clearly does not need.

"It was very disappointing that the Conservative council rejected our proposals to share some of the council's unexpected income with hard-pressed taxpayers," he said.

The proposal will be fully debated by councillors at the finance and administration committee on Tuesday and then the budget-setting meeting on February 18.

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