March 10 2014 Latest news:
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Council tax has been frozen in north Norfolk for the third year running, despite “potentially unfunded costs” of the recent storm damage.
The decision means that from April residents in an average band D property will continue to pay £138.87 for the district council element of the precepts.
The council has agreed not to increase tax following a government tax-freeze grant of £58,000 — extended for a further two years.
However, councillor Ann Moore, Liberal Democrats leader, said: “Freezes in council tax make for a good sound bite, but in fact they are eroding the underlying tax base.
“As a result the towns and parishes are taking up some of the burden and their precepts are rising by an average of 11pc, that is 14pc in the towns and 8pc in the villages so the overall council tax is increasing.”
But councillor Helen Eales said parish council precept increases in the Runtons were for services the district council could not provide.
The final bill will arrive on doorsteps in the beginning of March.
Norfolk County Council has announced a tax freeze, while the Norfolk Police and Crime Commissioner has announced a 1.97pc increase.
Last night’s budget also revealed a financial burden on the council’s general reserve from December’s tidal surge.
Wyndham Northam, cabinet member for resources, revenues and benefits, said: “It is held as a contingency for unplanned events and we all know the impact that these events, for example the recent storm, can have, not just in financial terms.”
Pending the outcome of insurance claims to the Government’s Bellwin Scheme the costs will be covered from the council’s general reserve.
Council leader Tom FitzPatrick said: “I am delighted with this budget. We are delivering on our election promises and I am proud to do so.”