Plaid aims to freeze council tax for second year running

31/12/2011

Plaid Cymru-led Caerphilly County Borough Council is aiming to provide help for hard-pressed families and individuals by freezing council tax next year – for a SECOND consecutive year.

This is despite Welsh Government not passing on £38.9m from the UK Government in additional funding to Welsh local authorities, Deputy Leader Councillor Colin Mann maintained the council still felt it was right not to increase bills.

Caerphilly council was the only Welsh authority to peg council tax in the current financial year. Bills are also being frozen in Scotland and England next year.

Councillor Mann, who has responsibility for corporate finance, said: “We made it clear last year that our aim was to freeze council tax.

“This year has been really tough for families and individuals. They’ve had to face rising food and fuel prices and a huge hike in gas and electricity charges. At the same time many have found their pay frozen or even cut.

“Plaid councillors feel very strongly that we should do all we can to avoid increasing council tax, which is one of biggest monthly demands on people’s incomes. We feel it is crucial not to burden them further if we can.

“We froze charges this year while maintaining quality frontline services which have been recognised by Welsh Government Ministers and the aim is to do the same in 2012.”

Leader of Council, Allan Pritchard added: “We were criticised by Labour politicians earlier this year for freezing council tax. We felt it was the right thing to do in these tough times – and we still do. If Labour don’t agree with freezing council tax they need to tell the public how much they think bills should be increased by.”

He added: “I’d also like to pay tribute to the commitment and dedication of our staff during these very difficult times and the work and professionalism of our senior officers.”