Plans to peg council tax for SECOND year unveiled

19/01/2012

Plans to freeze council tax in Caerphilly county borough for a SECOND consecutive year have been unveiled by the ruling Plaid Cymru group.

A draft budget report which has now gone to councillors for consultation proposes that the Band D rate for 2012-13 should remain at £897.84. All other tax bands would also be pegged.

If the freeze is approved – as expected – it will mean that council tax at Band D will have risen by just £45 over the four years of a Plaid administration – almost £100 less than the four years from 2004 when Labour controlled Caerphilly council.

Councillor Colin Mann, Deputy Leader and Cabinet member for corporate finance, said: "Families and individuals are going through really tough times and the Plaid group does not want to increase the financial burden on them. They’ve had to face rising food, energy and fuel prices. At the same time many of our residents have found their pay frozen or even cut.

"While some charges, such as garage rents and bulky waste collection charges, have been increased, residents don’t pay those fees unless they use those services and, of course, every household benefits if council tax is not increased. If Labour doesn’t support a freeze in charges they need to tell the public how much they would put up bills by.

"We stand by our record on council tax. Since 1998 the average increase under Labour has been 5.68 per cent, almost double that compared with Plaid at 3.59 per cent."

The proposals have been put forward despite Welsh Government not passing on £38.9m from the UK Government in rate support grant to Welsh local authorities to keep down the council tax.

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