More than 200 local authorities signal council tax freeze - Pickles
Published by 24publishing for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Central Government, Communities, Local Government
More than 200 councils signal council tax freeze - Pickles
More than 200 local authorities have signalled their intention to take up the Government's council tax freeze offer, communities secretary Eric Pickles confirmed today.
The Government has set aside up to £675 million for local authorities in England to help keep council tax down.
It says that more than 200 English councils are preparing to vote this month to freeze or reduce council tax next year.
Seven authorities have indicated they will cut council tax in cash terms. They are Hammersmith and Fulham, South Oxfordshire, Stratford-on-Avon, Tendring, Windsor and Maidenhead, Stratford-on-Avon, South Holland and the Greater London Authority.
The Government has now written to council leaders urging all councils to sign up to the freeze offer as 'an act of public service' that 'local residents will greatly appreciate'.
The Government said last year's freeze saved households up to an estimated £72 on a Band D bill, and say this year's freeze could potentially do the same.
Mr Pickles said: "Freezing council tax is a concrete way councils can support residents in tough times, by keeping bills down for local families. Anything less is a kick in the teeth to hard-working, decent taxpayers which is why it is great that over 200 councils have already pledged to freeze.
"Most councils will be setting their budgets in the next few weeks and I fully expect the number freezing to climb further. For council taxpayers who've seen their bills double since 1997 to around £120 a month they need that decision to go their way."