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

Councils found more than £300m in fraud during 2017-18

16/10/2018Councils found more than £300m in fraud during 2017-18

UK councils detected or prevented a total of £302m in fraud in 2017-18, according to CIPFA. The organisation found that the number of ... more >
Former Westminster council pensions boss found guilty of £1m fraud

16/10/2018Former Westminster council pensions boss found guilty of £1m fraud

A former employee of Westminster City Council has been found guilty of stealing nearly £1m from the council pension fund. Ian Woodall,... more >
Protesters gather as councillors meet to discuss mass children’s centre closures

15/10/2018Protesters gather as councillors meet to discuss mass children’s centre closures

Demonstrators and parents have gathered outside County Hall in Norwich to protest against planned mass children’s centre closures as Norfol... 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 >
Councils found more than £300m in fraud during 2017-18

16/10/2018Councils found more than £300m in fraud during 2017-18

UK councils detected or prevented a total of £302m in fraud in 2017-18, according to CIPFA. The organisation found that the number of fraud cases had increased compared to last year fr... more >
Former Westminster council pensions boss found guilty of £1m fraud

16/10/2018Former Westminster council pensions boss found guilty of £1m fraud

A former employee of Westminster City Council has been found guilty of stealing nearly £1m from the council pension fund. Ian Woodall, the former interim head of pensions and investmen... more >

the raven's daily blog

What cities should become

15/10/2018What cities should become

Tom Leaver, project manager at Future Cities Catapult, examines the rationale behind the creation of the City Data Sharing Toolkit, and explores how this is driving a seismic shift in how cities evolve into our data-rich future. We’re used to big-screen sci-fi future cities being dystopian monoliths to everything wrong with the worl... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

comment

Inspiring leadership in social value

15/10/2018Inspiring leadership in social value

We have learned a lot since the last National Social Value Conference, with many organisations both in the public and private sectors now embeddi... more >
Is fair funding possible, or pie in the sky?

15/10/2018Is fair funding possible, or pie in the sky?

David Phillips, associate director at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, discusses the current health of local government finance, and how a bette... more >
Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... more >
The Convention of the North

15/10/2018The Convention of the North

Steve Rotheram, mayor of the Liverpool City Region, discusses the findings of the very first Convention of the North, which was held in Newcastle... more >

interviews

Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... 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 >
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 >

public sector focus

View all News