Police aim for massive rise

SUFFOLK'S Police Authority is set to demand an inflation-smashing council tax rise of more than 15 per cent in April.And there was a warning today that the rise could be even greater next year.

SUFFOLK'S Police Authority is set to demand an inflation-smashing council tax rise of more than 15 per cent in April.

And there was a warning today that the rise could be even greater next year.

Council tax payers are expected to see a rise of 15.8pc in their council tax bills when the budget is confirmed next month.

But police authority members have been warned that the government could step in and cap this increase.

However they believe they may be able to argue against this because recent-comissioned local opinion polls suggested residents wanted more money spent on policing.

The government has told the authority: There are no general criteria for council tax limits but the position of each police authority will be considered on its individual merits – this will certainly take the budget figure into accound as well as the precept increase."

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Although council tax bills would increase by 15.8pc, the budget of the authority would increase by 7.37pc.

The percentage difference is because the government funding for the police authority – the largest part of its budget – is going up by only 2.7pc.

The police authority element of council tax is only about 10pc of the total – so an increase of 25.8pc will only add just over 1pc to total bills.

However it will be a blow to households and flies in the face of the county and district councils in Suffolk which are struggling to bring in rises well below 5pc.

The county council – responsible for the largest element of council tax bills – is putting its element up by just 3.9pc.

A 15.8pc rise from the police authority would add £13.41 a year to the annual bill of a Band B property – the most common council tax banding in Suffolk.

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