Economy and Infrastructure

01.03.18

Council tax rises could be highest in 14 years

Rising pressures and increasing complexity of services could see council tax increase by the highest proportion in 14 years across the country.

More than 95% of councils say they are set to increase tax, after the government allowed for a 3% rise without a local referendum.

The numbers come from a survey by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) which suggests the average household increase could be as high as 5.1%.

It also pointed out significant gaps in rates across the country, as the average band D bill in the north east is now £1,799, whereas in inner London it is £1,194.

“This sharp rise in council tax across the country reflects the enormous financial pressures many local authorities are currently under,” commented Rob Whiteman, CIPFA chief executive.

“Local government has made by far the biggest efficiencies in the public sector since 2010, but now it feels like crunch time, with the consequences of earlier funding cuts really beginning to bite.”

The news follows a similar announcement last month, when the LGiU revealed that a huge number of councils – more than 80% – admitted fears for their organisation’s future.

Of the 276 respondents to the CIPFA survey, only 13 said they would not be raising their taxes, while 71% are making the maximum increase allowed without triggering a referendum.

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