Smaller increase for district

HOUSEHOLDERS face a smaller than expected rise in council tax in Suffolk Coastal this year.Community leaders had been faced with levying a 4.9 per cent rise in tax, but say the figure will now be 3.

HOUSEHOLDERS face a smaller than expected rise in council tax in Suffolk Coastal this year.

Community leaders had been faced with levying a 4.9 per cent rise in tax, but say the figure will now be 3.9pc - a bill for the year of £141.21 for the average Band D property, an increase of £5.31.

Families will also have to pay the county council, police, and parish and town council precepts.

Suffolk Coastal's budget for the year from April will be £14.9 million.

In a report, cabinet member Robert Whiting said to keep spending to this figure savings of nearly £1 million had had to be made, while £573,000 would come from additional income, including increased car parking charges and extra fees for other services.

But the tax situation was unlikely to get any easier in future and in the next two years the council would again be faced with making savings, possibly £670,000 next year and as much as £1.25m the following year.

Most Read

Mr Whiting said the government's willingness to indicate its likely grant aid for the next two years had allowed authorities “greater certainty to support their financial planning”.

Despite faced with further cuts, the council was determined not to compromise the quality of its services.

“Delivering value for money services, but not at the expense of quality, is an integral part of the council's vision for the district, which aims to make Suffolk Coastal a place where the community continues to receive top quality, efficient services from the council in a rapidly changing environment,” he said.

“The Audit Commission's latest performance profile shows that the council is performing at an excellent level.”

In the next year, a number of projects will be carried out, including extending the doorstep recycling scheme to more households, driving forward the project to regenerate Felixstowe by employing a new officer to deal with the issue, and new sea defences.

Does Suffolk Coastal offer value for money? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk