Council tax increases win approval

February 27 2019

TAX payers will see their bill for basic South Gloucestershire Council services rise by an average of £43 this year.

The council has agreed a 2.99 per cent increase in council tax. That means average Band D householder will have a bill for £1,484.15, up from £1,441.07.
Emersons Green residents also pay a precept for services provided by the town council.
This year the town council’s overall precept spend of £234,285 will translate to a charge of £39.40 per Band D household.
A charge for “special expenses” – £18.02 for Emersons Green Band D tax payers – is added to bills for services which are specific to the area but provided by South Gloucestershire Council rather than the town council.
In Pucklechurch the parish council’s overall precept spend of £70,891 will see Band D taxpayers charged £77.29, with an extra £22.16 for special expenses added by South Gloucestershire.
A £26.13 rise in combined police and fire precepts will see these elements of Band D bills cost £291.29.
It means the total bill for a Band D council tax payer in Emersons Green will be more than £1,830.
The Conservative administration at South Gloucestershire, whose budget was passed on February 13, says it is investing “into the next generation”.
Council leader Toby Savage said: “We have put forward the largest funding commitments this council has ever made to our schools and to our roads, this administration’s two highest priorities.”
Liberal Democrat group leader Claire Young called the budget “a classic pre-election extend and pretend budget” which ignored the central issue of government underfunding.
Labour group leader Pat Rooney said the government reduction in the council’s funding of 11.2% was more than the national average decrease of 7.5% and added: “The primary cause of our financial problems is the Tories in Whitehall.”
• Emersons Green Town Council has earmarked £450,000 as reserves for its community project, and £98,000 is also to be earmarked as general reserves, which is within the limits recommend by the National Association of Local Councils.
Emersons Green mayor Rich Nichols said: "Emersons Green Town Council has held its precept at the same level since 2012 and we continue to have one of the lowest precepts within South Gloucestershire.
“Over the last year we have introduced a new Youth Outreach Service and we hope to expand youth provision in the town. We have reserves for a community project and we will be consulting local residents on this over the coming year."