Council claims public support for tax rise in Norwich

Panorama of Norwich from Mousehold Heath. Including, from left: the Castle, Shire Hall, St Peter Mancroft church, the Forum, City Hall, the Anglican Cathedral of the Holy and Undivided Trinity, St Giles church and the Roman Catholic cathedral church of St John; Photo: Bill Smith; 10th November 2010 Panorama of Norwich from Mousehold Heath. Including, from left: the Castle, Shire Hall, St Peter Mancroft church, the Forum, City Hall, the Anglican Cathedral of the Holy and Undivided Trinity, St Giles church and the Roman Catholic cathedral church of St John; Photo: Bill Smith; 10th November 2010

Monday, February 3, 2014
9:11 AM

People in Norwich are to be asked to pay an extra 1.95% on the city council’s share of the council tax from April.

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City Hall leaders had warned Norwich City Council’s element of council tax could have to rise again as it looked to protect front-line services while making savings.

At Wednesday’s cabinet meeting, the council will recommend that the council tax increase, along with cuts and savings of £3.3m, be included as part of a £19.3m budget for 2014/15.

The increase would see those living in the average Band B home in the city paying an extra £3.49 a year (an increase from £179.10 a year to £182.59) to the city council and

would net the council about £150,000 more.

Alan Waters, deputy leader of Norwich City Council, said: “If we are to do what we should do to protect important council services, a council tax increase is important and raises approximately £150,000.

“We have tested public opinion on this and it is six in 10 in favour, and 40% are strongly in favour of an increase in council tax to protect public services.”

He added: “We have a mandate from the people, so I don’t want to hear any nonsense about democracy dodging from [local government minister and Great Yarmouth MP] Brandon Lewis, as we had last year.”

City Hall officers, in a the report which will come before the controlling Labour cabinet, state: “The government has announced a further council tax freeze grant for 2014/15.

“The value of the grant offered is less than the amount that can be raised through the proposed increase in council tax and therefore the resulting shortfall would add considerably to already significant budgetary pressures.

“Therefore, based on recommendations in this report, the council would reject the freeze grant.”

According to the city council’s consultation – which asked if people would support a 2% council tax increase – of the 222 people who answered the question, 140 agreed.Among the cuts, savings and ways to save money proposed as part of the council’s consultation were:

Renting out City Hall meeting rooms for business receptions and conferences.

A “gradual increase” in cemetery fees and charges for allotments.

A review of empty homes to get more long-term properties into use – bringing in income from the new homes bonus.

Charging for replacing wheelie bins.

Buying private businesses to generate money.

Finding ways to bring in more money at St Andrew’s Hall and the Norman Centre.

Council tax bills for people in Norwich are split between the city council, the county council and the police.

Are you happy to pay more tax? Email your views to newsdesk@archant.co.uk

16 comments

  • When was this poll, how many people did it involve, what demographics were they? Come on Archant, just for once, try a bit of proper investigative journalism instead of just rewriting press releases. No support for a rise here!

    Report this comment

    IT Man

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Tax & Spend Spend Spend.... Good old Labour!

    Report this comment

    Andy T

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Oh yes. I forgot. Plod are increasing their money to, not for the "Saville effect" but to hound and persecute motorists. Waters, Try astopping all the useless waste of money jobsworths congregating outside county hall smoking. I future I will not think twice about having a go at the jobsworths.

    Report this comment

    "V"

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Jonny, I think Tudor B's complaint is more about the large amount of Business Rates he has to pay. Business Rates do not cover waste collection which has to be sourced and paid for separately by the business. I am also of the opinion that the system to calculate Business Rates should not be based on the size and value of the property which it is at the moment but instead based on the profitability of the business. This would mean that those who can pay would pay and struggling businesses would get much needed relief. Apart from Starbucks that is!

    Report this comment

    PDH

    Wednesday, February 5, 2014

  • Jonny - I'm struggling to think of a single thing that I rely upon from that mob of self-serving imbeciles in city hall. I do wonder however what happens to the £25,000 in business rates that I'm forced to hand over annually , for which I receive a receipt & nothing else. It would be nice to be able to use that money by giving someone a job in the real world.

    Report this comment

    Tudor Bushe

    Tuesday, February 4, 2014

  • Emphasis on the story. Norwich City Council, CLAIMS. See the vital word? I bet if you ask people on the street they would say otherwise. Mind you Archant seem to believe any Press Statement or MP that is issued, and it does not dig deeper for the real truth. Translated weak reporting !

    Report this comment

    che bramley

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • how can the public ever believe figures from labour ever again after thirteen years of lies and bogus figures from brown and blair. Why should we pay more as they were the ones who messed up in the first place

    Report this comment

    milecross

    Tuesday, February 4, 2014

  • Who is this Water's person V is talking to. I had an imaginary friend once. Maybe Waters has been taken to Room 101 at Prospect House after refusing to change old newspaper clippings.

    Report this comment

    PDH

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • All local authorities are seeing their budgets cut by the ConDem Government so in simple terms, they either pass those cuts onto the services we rely on or increase council tax. As a council tax payer I'm more than happy to pay a bit more to save public services we all rely on. A small contribution by those who can afford it for the common good is a fundamental Labour Party principle so as Labour have a majority to accuse them of being anti democratic is nonsense.

    Report this comment

    Jonny

    Tuesday, February 4, 2014

  • Andy it might have escaped you that Osborne has not paid back any of the national debt or QE money they printed like water. Todays economic figures, in a ghostly likeness, shadow that of the year 192728 just before the crash, the dollar is overvalued and some countries are overexposed one hundred times to their eyeballs. Crash it will and until it happens we will carry the can.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Is it April Fools day? Seriously, this claim, is absurd.

    Report this comment

    Crazy

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • The new inflationary policy by councils and our police commissioner, is to raise council tax precepts by 1.95% and assume support for such rise when it is not apparent at all, when the disabled are chased by bailiffs with council tax benefit cuts and when some 2.3 million people nationally are in council tax debt, then these arbitrary rises will hit the poorest harder. Why are they not raising it over 2% if they are so sure of support? Because it would cost us dearly to have a referendum on it, they say. Well, elections also cost us dearly, so why not dispense with them and select representatives by pulling a national insurance number out of a hat, at least that way we would place a normal person into represnting us, rather than a biased party politician.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Does the Green party agree to this hike? If not, why are they not speaking up about it? Surely their main candidate in the EU election would not splip up over such an issue, or would he?

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Tuesday, February 4, 2014

  • And who exactly did they ask ?. You can hear it from me instead Waters. YOU ARE DEMOCRACY DODGING JUST TO GET YOUR OWN WAY.

    Report this comment

    "V"

    Monday, February 3, 2014

  • Tudor B, how about waste collection and collection of council tax which then helps fund the police and county council social care & education services. I also rather like the new year fireworks & other entertainment the City Council help fund that brings people into the city to provide income for many businesses, maybe even yours.

    Report this comment

    Jonny

    Wednesday, February 5, 2014

  • I imagine that most of those in favour of an increase in council tax don't actually pay it - so why wouldn't they? Those of us that do pay will not only have our own tax to pay , but will also have to pay for the necessary increase in council tax benefits.

    Report this comment

    Tudor Bushe

    Monday, February 3, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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