North Norfolk District Council set to freeze its share of council tax bill for fifth year running
- Credit: Ian Burt
A key element of council tax in north Norfolk looks set to be frozen for a fifth year, despite continuing cuts in the cash it receives from the government.
North Norfolk District Council's cabinet heard on Monday that the district's share of this April's bill is set to stay the same, and that the council has a surplus of £462,424.
A delighted Tom FitzPatrick, district council leader, said: 'Five years of a zero increase is actually a reduction in real terms, taking into account inflation, and our services have been maintained during that time.'
Cabinet has recommended the budget to full council which will vote on it at its February 25 meeting.
If passed, homeowners in an average Band D property will pay £138.87 for the financial year beginning in April.
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The final bill will depend on the amounts demanded by Norfolk County Council, the police, and each householder's parish or town council.
The district council is planning for a 30pc reduction each year from central government funding, according to its chief executive Sheila Oxtoby.
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She said: 'We don't expect central government funding to improve. We are looking at our assets, sharing services, property investment and making efficiency savings.'
If the cuts continue, the authority will face a £1.2m deficit by the end of 2018/19.
But Mrs Oxtoby said the council was in a 'sound financial position'.
Mr FitzPatrick reiterated that message and said: 'It is a matter of running the council more prudently. We are looking at ways of generating income.'
The council's proposed baseline budget for 2015/16 is £13m and on top of that it will have a reserve of just under £16m.