Ashfield council aims to scrap council tax for care leavers

The names of those with out have not been released and no suggestion that they have done anything wrong.
The names of those with out have not been released and no suggestion that they have done anything wrong.

People leaving care could soon have their council tax exempt automatically by Ashfield District Council.

Care leavers living in Ashfield can already receive 100 per cent reduction based purely on a means tested process.

Council leader Jason Zadrozny said the council’s cabinet is set to discuss removing the means test for care leavers in July.

And the discount which he says would cost the authority ‘a few thousand’ could also be extended to giving exemption to residents called up for the reserved forces.

Coun Zadrozny said: “The care system finishes at 16 and if you have been in foster care all your life, a lot of young people from 16-21 have not had a stable upbringing.

“They may have been moved around a lot.

“The challenge is to get into something stable, college or work .

“Most are good kids who are not in care by their own fault.

“Perhaps their parents have died and they have gone through a significant trauma.

“One lad I know has had to find a flat and he’s got a job at Aldi but he is struggling as he doesn’t have a support network.

“This is just a tiny bit of help we can give to make sure they feel at that critical point they can make it on their own - is it worth going to work or college rather than relying on benefits I think it will be worth it.”

Councillors will write to Nottinghamshire County Council and the Police authority to ask if the exemption can be applied on all council tax.

He said the exemptions which have already been applied in Gedling and Ruschliffe would apply immediately if passed at cabinet level.

He added: “We want to extend it to people in the reserved forces so that if they are called up for active duty.

“They are prepared to give so much by protecting us I think it is the least we can do.”