Economy and Infrastructure

12.02.18

London borough tables ‘voluntary contribution’ tax plans for richest residents

City of Westminster Council, which is responsible for one of the wealthiest boroughs in London, has put forward plans to allow certain residents to pay a voluntary council tax.

The policy would mean people living in Band H properties will be asked to pay double the rates normally charged by the council on a voluntary basis.

It has been proposed after a public consultation suggested that many residents living in the most expensive homes were supportive of paying into such a scheme.

While residents would still be required to pay the Greater London Authority (GLA) sections of their tax, and contribute toward the adult social care precept, the rest of Westminster’s council tax rates would be frozen.

Money raised by the plan will be spent specifically on tackling issues of isolation and loneliness, providing extra support for young homeless people, and investing in youth services.

“We remain determined to help those on lowest incomes by freezing their council tax,” explained Cllr Nickie Aiken, leader of Westminster Council.

“The law does not allow us to raise council tax for just one Band. If we raise council tax we must do so for everyone – from the lowest to the highest bands. The voluntary Westminster Community Contribution offers a fair way for those who want to contribute more to do so.

“Back in October 2017, I decided to act on a growing number of requests from some residents who live in the highest valued homes that they wanted to voluntarily contribute more than their existing council tax. I am delighted that so many people want to support the initiative in its first year.”

Aiken went on to say that the consultation showed the “kind and generous spirit” of Westminster residents who were willing to contribute to improving the local area.

The latest report on the council’s public survey says that just over 50% of the 904 people who owned homes worth more than £5m were supportive of the policy, while the number dips slightly below half for those who own homes worth less than £5m.

Based on the responses, the proposals could raise an additional £350,000 – a council spokesman said – with around 2,000 residents owning homes worth more than £10m, which falls within band H.

The council's cabinet will make a decision on the proposals on 19 February, with a recommendation expected to be brought to full council on 7 March for a final decision.

Top images: Westminster

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become a PSE columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

public sector executive tv

more videos >

latest public sector news

High Court allows London council to fine and imprison illegal campers

17/08/2018High Court allows London council to fine and imprison illegal campers

A council has successfully obtained a High Court injunction allowing it to use greater powers – from fines and asset seizure to imprisonmen... more >
Northamptonshire report to propose splitting region into two unitaries

17/08/2018Northamptonshire report to propose splitting region into two unitaries

A report on the future of the debt-ridden Northamptonshire region due to be published this afternoon will likely recommend replacing all eight lo... more >
Council forced to apologise after telling ‘intimidating’ football fans they were unwelcome

16/08/2018Council forced to apologise after telling ‘intimidating’ football fans they were unwelcome

A Lancashire council has apologised after sending a letter that stated football fans “will no longer be welcome” in the town centre f... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >
High Court allows London council to fine and imprison illegal campers

17/08/2018High Court allows London council to fine and imprison illegal campers

A council has successfully obtained a High Court injunction allowing it to use greater powers – from fines and asset seizure to imprisonment and – against illegal travellers in the re... more >
Northamptonshire report to propose splitting region into two unitaries

17/08/2018Northamptonshire report to propose splitting region into two unitaries

A report on the future of the debt-ridden Northamptonshire region due to be published this afternoon will likely recommend replacing all eight local authorities with two unitary councils. Pu... more >

the raven's daily blog

Don’t horse around! Council finds new home for house-bound pony

13/08/2018Don’t horse around! Council finds new home for house-bound pony

A council that took four years in a legal wrangle to remove a pony from an Isle of Lewis house may have found the four-legged beast a new home. Western Isles council removed Grey Lady Too – a Connemara pony that was taken into the home by pensioner Stephanie Noble on Christmas Eve in 2011 – from its residence in 2014 because i... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

comment

A new era of opportunity for the north

13/08/2018A new era of opportunity for the north

It’s time to stop seeing transport investment as a nice-to-have: it’s a cut-through catalyst for growth in sectors across the north. ... more >
Council mergers: little gain, less democratic

13/08/2018Council mergers: little gain, less democratic

Dr Linze Schaap, associate professor at the Tilburg Centre for Regional Law and Governance, and Dr Niels Karsten, assistant professor at the Tilb... more >
Creating a council cloud-first approach

13/08/2018Creating a council cloud-first approach

Georgina Maratheftis, programme manager for local government at techUK, makes the case for wider adoption of cloud technology by local authoritie... more >
The strength of districts

13/08/2018The strength of districts

Cllr Isobel Darby, member lead for quality of life at the District Councils’ Network (DCN) and leader of Chiltern District Council, shares ... more >

interviews

Modern policing: the future is bright

06/08/2018Modern policing: the future is bright

SPONSORED INTERVIEW The public sector, and policing in particular, has often been criticised as being slow to adapt to change. But now, says L... more >
Michael King: Time for Ombudsman reform

06/08/2018Michael King: Time for Ombudsman reform

Michael King first joined the Local Government Ombudsman service back in 2004 as deputy ombudsman. At the start of 2017, he was appointed as the ... more >
Helping a city understand itself

06/08/2018Helping a city understand itself

SPONSORED INTERVIEW The urban landscape is changing. How can local authorities keep up with citizen behaviour? Stephen Leece, managing directo... more >
Data at the heart of digital transformation

03/04/2018Data at the heart of digital transformation

SPONSORED INTERVIEW Grant Caley, UK & Ireland chief technologist at NetApp, speaks to PSE’s Luana Salles about the benefits of movin... more >

public sector focus

View all News