Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 8°C

min temp: 3°C

Search

Councils in Suffolk and Essex could put up bills by an extra 1% next year

PUBLISHED: 17:47 19 December 2017

Colin Noble. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Colin Noble. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Council tax payers could see their bill rise further in April after the government eased the cap on rises.

Until now councils have been unable to put up council tax bills by more than 2% – although this year they can apply an extra 3% to cover the cost of social care.

Now the 2% limit has been increased to 3% – meaning county councils like Suffolk could put up their element of bills by 6%.

The change was announced by Local Government Secretary Sajid Javid as he announced the government’s settlement for local councils in the House of Commons.

He also announced that Suffolk would be one of 10 counties across the country that would be able to retain 100% of its business rates as an experiment from April. At present its councils can only retain 50% of business rates.

Officials were still trying to digest these changes for Suffolk but county council leader Colin Noble said: “We are planning for a basic council tax increase of 1.99% and that is our position.

“But we are now checking the figures now and it will go to our cabinet and full council in the new year.”

He also welcomed the chance to hold on to business rates: “Suffolk welcomes the Secretary of State’s announcement that it has been accepted as a 100% Business Rates pilot area in 2018-19.

“We are now studying the details of the scheme and will be working with colleagues in the borough and district councils to identify what this means for the whole Suffolk system.”

In Essex there was a welcome for plans to change the funding formula – but there remains a feeling that the county is second-best to London when it comes to government support for local government services.

Louise McKinlay, Cabinet Member for Resources, said: “It is vital we now contribute to the debate to ensure a fair funding system for local government, one that gives us the financial stability we deserve and need.

“We must bring an end to the current postcode lottery where Essex residents get just £193 per person to pay for services, compared to our London neighbours who receive £563 each.

“While we are fully equipped to cope with the challenges ahead because of our excellent financial management, there is so much more we want to do and could do with our fair share of national resources.”

The independent body responsible for triple murderer David McGreavy’s release has insisted it will never free dangerous criminals until it is “convinced” it is safe to do so.

The number of people visiting Ipswich Cornhill has increased significantly since refurbishment work finished at the start of November, according to new measuring devices in the town centre.

New data has revealed a number of major faults at abattoirs and cutting plants across the county – highlighting serious issues with contamination, food safety and animal suffering.

From subtle Santa hats to tricky gingerbread men Ipswich nail technician Chelsea Scarlett has done them all.

Find out how long criminals of East Anglia will spend behind bars with our jailed round-up.

A group of Beavers based in Mendlesham have welcomed two new leaders after launching a desperate appeal to save their colony.

In the latest of our series in celebrating community heroes we spoke to The Wildlife Gadget Man, Jason Alexander about his work helping to fight plastic waste across the county.

Free iCards for Ipswich youngsters last summer cost £100,000 it has emerged, as latest figures have revealed the extent of take up.

Dogs, cats and rats feature in this weeks round-up. Do you have room in your home for one of these cute creatures from the RSPCA centre in Martlesham?

Greater Anglia’s first new “bimode” diesel and electric train for rural routes has ventured out on to the region’s rail network for the first time.

Most read

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Ipswich Star daily newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

MyDate24 MyPhotos24