Tax increase for Babergh

RESIDENTS in Babergh will face an average tax increase of less than three per cent in April.Babergh District Council has agreed to increase its share of the tax by 3.

RESIDENTS in Babergh will face an average tax increase of less than three per cent in April.

Babergh District Council has agreed to increase its share of the tax by 3.6 per cent ensuring a total increase per household below the rate of inflation.

Overall residents in the district will face an average increase of 2.99pc when the county council, parish councils and police authority charge are taken into consideration.

Despite this some councillors voiced their objections to Babergh's share of the tax claiming it was too high.


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Dave Busby, councillor for Pinewood, attempted to move an amendment to the council's recommendation calling for additional funding to come from service cuts and not taxpayers.

He said: "At the first sign of needing a little more money we run to the taxpayer and break our promise. Is this really the best we can do – I hope not."

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Initially Babergh had planned to increase its share of the tax by 3.1pc anticipating a greater government grant and an additional £23,000 part year sum from the introduction of long term parking charges in the district.

But earlier in the month the authority voted against such charges creating a shortfall in the budget.

The reduced government grant will now be met using the council's reserves and £20,000 of the lost parking charges will be paid via tax – increasing Babergh's share of the bill above inflation.

Mr Busby's motion to find £18,600 of that sum through cutting low priority services was rejected and band D households in his Pinewood ward will now face an annual bill of £1,215.

Sue Carpendale, chairman of Babergh's strategy committee, said: "It is important that we recognise what we want to achieve for this district over the coming years has to be paid for and that if further savings and additional income and grant are insufficient for that purpose, there will be a need to increase the council tax.

"I hope that in future years we will be able to achieve our aim of council tax increases that do not exceed the rate of inflation.

"For a band D property there is an increase of £4.15 a year – 8p a week."

N What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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