Council tax increase for people in Norwich is agreed
PUBLISHED: 23:23 25 February 2020 | UPDATED: 23:23 25 February 2020
People in Norwich will be paying more council tax to City Hall for the next year, after councillors voted for a 1.99pc increase.
The increase, the maximum the government currently allows without requiring a referendum, will add £5.25 on to the annual bill for a Band D property - 10p a week.
But council leaders say the extra cash will provide about £195,000 more for the city council and help protect services.
And they said 58pc of people who responded to a consultation were in favour of the increase.
The Labour-run council agreed to make £1.7m of savings in 2020-21, but says that will be done through backroom savings and generating more income, rather than frontline service cuts.
Paul Kendrick, cabinet member for resources and finance, said: "This is a budget that protects the poorest in our community."
And he said the council's investment in commercial property, which includes a cold store in Corby and a Travelodge in Essex, had helped bring in revenue to protect services - despite the criticism over the strategy from Green councillors.
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The opposition Green group had put forward a motion which included using £70,000 to set up a "citizens' assembly" to devise a plan for tackling the environmental crisis.
It also included money for more CCTV coverage and for £65,000 to be split between all 13 city council wards, to be spent as councillor chose - instead of spending money on tennis courts at Heigham Park. But the Green motion was defeated before Labour's budget was agreed.
At Tuesday night's full council meeting, the authority also agreed its policy of offering a 100pc council tax reduction scheme to support people most in need will continue.
In Norwich, council tax is split between Norfolk County Council (72pc), Norwich City Council (14pc) and the police and crime commissioner (14pc).
Norfolk County Council last week agreed to a 3.99pc increase in its share of the council tax, while Norfolk's police and crime commissioner Lorne Green has gone for 3.95pc rise in the policing element of the tax.
Combined with the city council increase, that means someone in a Band D home faces an annual bill of £1,948.96.
However, most Norwich homes are in band A and B - which will have bills of £1,299.31 and £1,515.86, respectively.
Broadland District Council last week increased its council tax share by 3.62pc - which added about £4.40 a year to Band D property bills and South Norfolk by 3.33pc - an extra £5.