Severely disabled residents in Newcastle will have to pay council tax from April 1st. The change was passed by 44 votes to 21 at Newcastle City Council's meeting last night.
Those effected will be:
- living in a band A property
- pay approximately £3 a week in taxes
- one of around 6000 effected by the change
At present Newcastle City Council provides 100% relief for people registered as severely disabled.
The council say this is a consequence of an £8m cut in the government’s local council tax reduction scheme.
Millions of pounds worth of savings are set to be confirmed by Darlington Borough Council later today.
The budget for the next six years is to be confirmed which includes a series of price increases for public services and nearly a two percent rise in council tax.
The Head of Steam museum is also set to close.
Council tax in County Durham will go up for the first time in five years.
Councillors agreed a 1.99% rise at a Cabinet meeting this morning.
The local authority predicts the additional income from council tax will generate £3.29m in 2014/15.
Since 2011, 1500 jobs have been axed at Durham County Council, but councillors vowed to keep further compulsory redundancies to 'an absolute minimum.'
Freedom of Information requests were sent to almost every council in the region. Some were unable to provide exact figures. The full breakdown of council tax arrears from North East councils who responded to our Freedom of Information requests is listed below:
- Durham County Council: £23,320,942
- Newcastle City Council: £15,673,796
- Darlington Borough Council: £4,179, 119
- Sunderland City Council: £9,500,000
- Gateshead Borough Council: £7,025,726
- Northumberland County Council: £12,994,114
The North East has seen the highest average council tax rises in the country this year. The average Band D bill will be up £13.81, which is 0.9%. The national average is only up by 0.3%.
However, the body which does the annual survey, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA), says the increase is still relatively small. No local authority has increased the tax by more than 4%.