The Battle of the 0% Council Tax Budgets

On the 26th February, Cornwall Council will set its budget and Council Tax rate for 2013/14. The meeting is likely to be lively. One reason is there is an election looming on 2nd May, and each political party will be setting out their stalls on who is best for Cornwall.

Today, both the Liberal Democrats and a sect of the Conservatives announced their alternative budget which would see a 0% increase in Council Tax. Currently, the Cabinet has recommended a rise of 1.97%.

Furthermore, It is very strange that the Conservatives have in essence two budgets. You would think they would be able to talk amongst themselves and come to a common purpose on the Council Tax. Or are the different factions within the Conservatives just unable to bury the hatchet in a peaceful way, rather than in each others backs?

The debate will no doubt centre on whose 0% budget is best. However, if there is common ground, maybe a joint budget could be submitted? After all, I believe all Councillors whats best for Cornwall and which keeps services running on a financially sound footing. So why not come together, or is May 2nd just too close?

My stance and how I will vote at this meeting will be looking at the main proposals and the various alternatives to see what is actually best for Cornwall; not what looks good on an election leaflet.

13 comments

  • Why wont CC consider reclassifying properties as smaller homes,which would include box rooms being disregarded

  • Andrew Wallis

    It could (if legal) for small box like rooms in its own stock, but not sure on private rent or other RSL housing. It is a question I have asked

  • 2) No account shall be taken for the purposes of the bedroom standard of
    a room having a floor area of less than 50 square feet.
    (3) A room is available as a bedroom if it is of a type normally used in the
    locality as a bedroom

  • karen Campbell

    Dear Cllr Wallis,

    What are Cornwall Council doing to inform all Cornish residents of working age that they will now have to pay 25% of their council tax bill as of April? Where are the information leaflets? And the posters or info on the Cornwall Council website letting people know about the totality of all the welfare (social security) impact changes happening very very soon. Hidden away in the Council’s own papers that they commissioned, is a report by Experian that reveals evidence that the poorest families with 3 children or more will lose £600 per month in benefits.

    I I do think the Council has a duty to inform the people of Cornwall – the people who elect the Councillors, of how all these cuts – imposed by central government but implemented by political choices made by Cornwall Council – will directly affect their lives.

    K Campbell

  • What a mess at County Hall! Three proposals, well fair enough, but when 2 of them are from the Party in control? And many people who have not paid Council Tax before will get their first and only official notification with the annual letter, I suppose?

  • The Social Housing regs were published in 2010. Private tenants have for many years had HB restricted if it was deemed that the accommodation had ‘too many rooms’. Now the Govt extends that regime to social housing tenants. Although no a/c is taken of very small rooms (unless established as bedrooms) in Social Housing there are unlikely to be many in this category as social housing has historically been built to higher standards than private. And the regs do not of course afford any help to tenants on very low incomes in regards to council tax.

  • What will be the impact on the poor someone must stand up for these people?4WelfarePeopleImpact.pdf
    Download

  • mick martyn

    what a shambles this all is. Reading the lib dem budget on Alex Folkes blog, 1 day he is asking people what they would like and the next he is blogging what they are already proposing so obviously to survey a day before meant a lot – another election winner.

    i really dont know how people can continue to afford to swallow increases, benefit cuts etc year on year it is getting harder and harder.

    Andrew i asked on a previous post if the strategic partnership with BT is now a dead duck – i presume it is??

  • Andrew Wallis

    Hi Mick

    As for the JV, I will find out tomorrow after I attend the JV meeting.

  • mick martyn

    Thanks Andrew, loom forward to finding out.

    A couple of other beefs i have about the Lib Dem budget is that on one hand they were campaigning (rightly so) against making everyone pay at least 25% council tax saying the council just wont be able to collect it etc etc and now part of their master plan is to magically increase the % of council tax that the council collects!!! a) have they not forgotten that they have just been campaigning that it will be more difficult to collect and b) i’m sure all of the staff who work so hard collecting what they do really value being told that they can do better.

    2nd beef is that i’m fed up with the lib dems spouting off that it is a tory led council with cheap shots, dont they remember that the leader was actually voted in by them and voted against by the conservatives?!?!? surely that makes it a lib dem led?

    Rant over – sorry andrew but hope these comments are still valid.

  • How will Cornwall and Devon share Revenue Allocations 114.0 million?Are the two counties joined together for funding allocations?http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmhansrd/cm130204/wmstext/130204m0001.htm#1302042000002

  • Pingback: » The Tory 0% Budget Amendment that does not add up Cllr Andrew Wallis

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