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South Ribble Borough Council reverse decision on council tax rise

Posted on - 23rd February, 2022 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Politics, Preston News, South Ribble News
Leader of South Ribble Borough Council Paul Foster
Leader of South Ribble Borough Council Paul Foster

Residents will be able to support the local economy more after councillors reversed their decision to increase council tax.

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The council did intend to raise council tax for South Ribble residents by 1.99 per cent however, councillors will now look to freeze the charge as residents struggle with the increase in the cost of living.

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The council have been able to make the move as the income the council receives from business rates is higher than anticipated, allowing the council to maintain its plans to invest £8 million in the borough.

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Councillor Paul Foster, Leader of South Ribble Borough Council, said: “We’ve always said that we will only put council tax up when we have to, not because we can.

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“We all know the pressures residents are facing with household bills going up, and feedback in the consultation about the budget was that people did not want to see a council tax increase.

“We’ve had some very late information through from the Government that means we will be receiving more from business rates, so this allows us to freeze council tax without affecting our funding going forward.

“It’s good news because we are able to do our bit to help residents and the increase in business rate income is down to the growth in the local economy, which is a really good sign as we come out of the pandemic.”

Alongside the council tax freeze, the authority is pledging more than £8 million to go towards creating affordable homes for local people, improving our parks and open spaces, and supporting businesses – with more funding also being made available for community groups and sports clubs that have been affected by the pandemic.

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In setting out its plans during what continues to be one of the most challenging environments for local authorities, South Ribble Borough Council believes its transformation of how it operates and good financial management mean it can support local communities when they need it most.

“Our ability to freeze council tax and invest one of the largest sums of money in services for some time is undoubtedly down to the strong leadership at the council and good financial management,” said Councillor Foster.

“This is what you get when you have a council delivering for local residents and we are also pledging to freeze council tax next year too.

“This budget means each and every part of the borough will see investment in the local area to bolster that community spirit and pride that we have all felt even more strongly as we have supported each other through the pandemic.”

The budget is subject to approval at full council during Wednesday 23 February.



Read more: See the latest Preston news and headlines

Are you pleased to see council tax might be frozen? Let us know in the comments below.

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