Council make ‘difficult decision’ to raise council tax

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People living in band D properties in Ashfield will see a £5 rise in council tax as the new budget has been set.

Ashfield District Council approved its 2018/19 budget at a meeting on Monday, March 5, and set council tax at a level which represented a 2.77 per cent increase or £5 at band D properties.

With the majority of our homes in band A the annual increase for residents based on our precept at band A is £3.33 or 6p per week.

However it should be noted that other preceptors have increased their council tax and therefore the overall financial impact on households will include those increases as well.

The council’s budget for next year includes a range of income and savings to help reduce the budget by £1m.

The council will also be using the general fund revenue reserve to help meet the shortfall between our income and expenditure.

Leader of Ashfield District Council, Coun Cheryl Butler, said: “This is the seventh year the council has been forced to make savings and there are more financial challenges ahead because the council still needs to find between an additional £2.65 million and £4.5m by 2023 subject to government funding changes.

“This year’s budget follows a sustained effort in which the council has modernised, restructured and transformed.

“We need to continue to be innovative and look for new ways to generate income and we are well underway with plans to support this.

“We have worked hard to protect front-line services across the district and to ensure that local residents continue to get the services they need at the best possible value for money, and the budget recommendations reflect that.

“The government is continually failing to provide adequate support for the growing pressures of councils such as ours.

“The council has taken the difficult decision to raise council tax in order to help protect services for the residents of Ashfield; a position that is unlikely to change over the time of this administration.

“The government is making cuts at the expense of public services, redirecting money from local councils rather than putting money into the system to ensure it is funded properly for residents and communities.”