Devon County Council council tax

Pass-the-parcel council tax rises

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Council tax bills have just popped through our letterboxes, showing a 4% rise overall, including 4% increases for Devon County Council and EDDC, 2% for the police, and 11% for Seaton Town Council. These unwelcome rises are the result of the Conservative Government’s savage cuts to local government spending, which are forcing councils to tax more to keep services afloat. George Osborne will pretend that he has avoided tax increases – but he hasn’t, he’s just passed the parcel to councils and hopes voters will be stupid enough to blame them rather than him. He will also claim that this deep austerity is inevitable – but it isn’t, it’s a choice, which could be avoided by proper tax collection from multinationals and rich individuals, as well as perhaps by modest extra taxes (on property, rather than income?).

NB Seaton’s rise partly reflects the short-term costs of taking on the Town Hall and Marshlands at the same time, before income is realised from the latter.


Total County council tax rise 3.99%

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More news from Devon County Council – the total council tax rise, including the extra 2% that is permitted to partly offset the shortfall in funding for social care, will be 3.99%. At the same time, EDDC will be increasing its take by 1.99% and there will be a rise in the small Seaton Town Council precept. Overall households’ council tax increase will be well in excess of 3%, since the County accounts for most of the tax.

As I noted earlier in the week, council tax is rising to partially offset savage government spending cuts – no doubt ministers hope councils will also take the blame.

Government cuts funding, Council tax rises

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claireIndependent County Councillor, Claire Wright, comments: ‘Devon County Council is set to increase council tax by two per cent this year, as it tries to manage yet another massive funding cut from central government of £28m.

‘I loathe the idea of raising council tax in such hard times, however, I am putting the blame squarely at the government’s door for this.

‘The revenue expected to be raised from the council tax rise of 2 per cent, is a drop in the ocean compared to the cuts for this year, which amount to £28m.

‘What we are now seeing is a situation where residents are paying more every year for ever decreasing services. And this will continue as the Conservatives continue to shrink the state.

‘Legal tax avoidance by big business costs the country tens of billions of pounds every year, but the government shows no signs of tackling this.  Why not?’

Here’s the official press release –