Economy and Infrastructure

08.03.18

County council to plug ‘critical’ £16m funding gap with 12.5% tax rise

Pembrokeshire County Council has approved a whopping 12.5% increase in council tax today as the authority aims to tackle a £16m funding gap.

The decision was made at a full council meeting, where councillors also agreed a full budget for the year and a 2018-22 financial plan.

The tax hike represents a rise of £110 each year for residents in a Band D property, reaching a total of £993.

Despite the increase, Pembrokeshire will still boast the lowest council tax in Wales and the third lowest in both England and Wales together.

“By voting through this rise, elected members have enabled the authority to close a critical £16m funding gap and therefore protect from cuts essential services such as education and social care,” explained council leader, Cllr David Simpson.

“If we had voted for either a 5% or 8% increase in council tax – which were also options – then those services would have been badly hit, consequently affecting the most vulnerable members of our society.

“I would remind our householders that Pembrokeshire remains one of the leanest and most productive local authorities in Wales and we actually currently deliver services at £14.8 million less than the Welsh government say we should.”

Simpson went on to say he believed the full council had “made the right decision” to green-light the increase, which would allow it to deliver services in the “most cost-effective way.”

Top image: Pembrokeshire CC

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