Figures produced by the Department for Communities and Local Government have shown Swindon to have the largest percentage increase in council tax in England.
See table 7 of the following Department for Communities and Local Government webpage for further evidence-https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/council-tax-levels-set-by-local-authorities-in-england-2017-to-2018
Including Parish Precept charges, Swindon residents will be receiving an average percentage increase of 10.35%. That’s 3% more than the next largest average council-tax increase in a local authority area- Waveney District Council area.
The large increases in council tax across Swindon has been as a result of Tory-run Swindon Council forcing parish councils to take on responsibilities for local services that had previously been run by the borough council. However Swindon Council refused to give Swindon residents a rebate for no longer running these services and have in fact increased people’s council-taxes to the borough council by up to 7.2%.
See below a table of largest council tax increases across England:
|Rank||Local Authority Area||Percentage Council Tax Increase|
The Leader of the Labour Group, Councillor Jim Grant, said:
“After years of proclaiming to be a low tax party, Swindon’s Conservative Council have now achieved the status of highest council tax increasing authority in the country, it’s a dramatic change in philosophy. In fact, Swindon’s percentage increase in council tax is nearly double what most other local authorities’ increases are.
For more than a year Labour Councillors have been telling residents this council tax rise was coming under what the Conservatives had proposed and the Conservatives denied it. We opposed the creation of new parishes because it was against residents’ wishes and because they were forcing people to pay parish councils to take on services without giving them a rebate in their council-tax to the borough council.
I’m now being contacted by residents who are very angry the council are increasing the council-tax by such a large amount when the government said any increase above 5% had to be agreed through a local referendum.
They’re saying that they are paying a lot more in council tax and yet services are getting worse and they’re still having to pay £50 for services like green waste collection that was once paid for through council-tax.
I have every sympathy with these residents and agree that they should be getting the referendum promised to them by the Tory Government through the Localism Act.”