HOUSEHOLDERS in Hambleton will once again see no rise in their council tax element paid to the district council.
Although district councillors agreed a rise of 2.5 per cent – or £2.24 a year – for a Band D property at last week’s full council meeting, the increase will not be passed on to residents as central Government will pick up the extra cost, effectively freezing rates for tax payers.
It is the second year the Government has funded rises set at or below 2.5 per cent and without the subsidy, the district council’s element of council tax would be £91.72 a year for a Band D property – rather than the £89.48 that will actually be charged because of the central funding.
Council leader Coun Neville Huxtable said: “An increase of 2.5 per cent is in line with the council’s long-term financial strategy.
“This means we can take advantage of the Government’s scheme – and will still mean Hambleton is one of the lowest charging authorities in the country.
“This year, for the second year running, our taxpayers will not be footing the small annual increase. They are effectively getting a tax freeze – invaluable in this hard financial climate.”
Over the two years to 2013, the district council will have lost £1.66m – almost 29 per cent – in its Government grant with the settlements for the remaining two years of the plan still unknown.
Coun Huxtable said: “We have made some serious decisions to meet the loss in Government grant but we are rising to the challenge, bringing in massive savings through shared work with Richmondshire District Council, efficiencies and by working more closely with parish councils and other partners.
“The bottom line is that Hambleton is still in a good place financially.”
Hambleton is the collecting agency for council tax for North Yorkshire County Council, North Yorkshire Police Authority, North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue, and parish council precepts.
When all the charges are added together, an average Band D property will receive a bill for £1,413.61 in the next financial year.