People in Norwich face biggest council tax hike in years after city follows county and police in agreeing increase

PUBLISHED: 08:34 24 February 2016 | UPDATED: 08:34 24 February 2016

City Hall in Norwich. Photo: Nick Butcher.

City Hall in Norwich. Photo: Nick Butcher.

EDP pics © 2007

People in Norwich are facing the biggest hike in their council tax bills for years after city councillors became the latest to agree an increase.

More than £50 a year will be added to city bills for Band D properties and just over £42 for a Band B home, now Norfolk County Council, Norwich City Council and Norfolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner have all decided to up their share of the tax.

The county council this week agreed a 3.99pc increase, of which 2pc will be for adult social care. County Hall leaders said the increase, the first in the county council’s share for five years, would head off cuts.

Police and crime commissioner Stephen Bett is putting up the element which goes to Norfolk police by 1.98pc. That came after his original proposal for a freeze was vetoed by Norfolk’s police and crime panel, after an impassioned plea by the county’s chief constable.

And tonight, the city council agreed a 1.95pc increase. That will add £4.67 a year to a Band D property.

The £16.1m budget will see £3.5m of savings made, but City Hall officers said that would not “significantly impact” front-line services.

Mike Stonard, Labour cabinet member for resources and income generation, said of the council tax increase: “This will raise just under £162,000 and help us maintain essential services in difficult times while keeping our increase to a relatively low level.”

A Green amendment by councillor Martin Schmierer to use £45,000 from the council’s reserves to employ an officer to pursue external funding for the council and one from councillor Denise Carlo to put £37,500 from the grounds maintenance budget into tree planting were defeated, despite backing from Liberal Democrats.

Broadland District Council, which covers areas such as Sprowston, Hellesdon. Old Catton, Spixworth and Thorpe St Andrew, will meet on Thursday, but is likely to freeze its share.

Decisions on Great Yarmouth, Breckland, West Norfolk and Waveney will also be made this week.

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