Council tax rise SHOCK in 2019: How much will YOUR council tax increase by in 2019? | Personal Finance | Finance |
Council tax increases of almost five percent are likely across England from April 2019. Thursday’s annual funding settlement provided little extra money for local authorities, despite more funding announced in the Budget. An additional policing fee could also hit households in the new year.
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Communities Secretary James Brokenshire outlined the provisional legal government funding settlement for 2019-2020 in a speech on Thursday, in which he confirmed councils will be able to up tax rates by upto thee legal threshold of 4.99 percent.
This 4.99 percent is made up of 2.99 percent for the general local authority budget and a further two percent which must be allocated to social care.
Analysts say that would add about £80 to the annual average bill for a B and D home — currently £1,671.
An additional £24 can be added to the charge to fund the local police force.
Council tax rise SHOCK in 2019 (Image: Getty)
The Local Government Association (LGA) said the tax rise would not be enough to prevent service and job cuts after eight years of austerity.
James Brokenshire, local government secretary, pointed to the £1bn in extra funding announced in the Budget.
He said core spending power would increase from £45.1bn in 2018-19 to £46.4bn in 2019-20, a cash increase of 2.8 per cent but a virtual freeze after inflation is taken into account.
The LGA said government grant funding would be cut by £1.3bn (36 percent) in 2019-20.
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Some 168 councils out of 353 will not receive any government grant at all.
Overall, the funding gap would be £3.2bn in 2019/20.
Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, said: “It is disappointing that the government has not used the settlement to provide further desperately needed resources for councils next year.
“Many councils will be forced to take tough decisions about which services have to be scaled back or stopped altogether to plug funding gaps.”
Council tax: Overall, the funding gap would be £3.2bn in 2019/20 (Image: Getty)
He said local authorities were hoping the Spending Review next year would “deliver a truly sustainable funding settlement for local government”.
The number of adults and children needing social care is rising far faster than council budgets.
The County Councils Network said most of its members would raise council tax.
John O’Connell, chief exec of the Taxpayers Alliance Councils, last night urged councils to do more to find savings before hitting homeowners with even bigger bills.