Five-year council tax bills freeze in South Holland set to end

Peter Coupland EMN-150715-133546001
Peter Coupland EMN-150715-133546001
  • Proposed £5 hike for 2016-17 blamed on ‘financial pressures’
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Council tax payers in South Holland could face an average £5 hike in their bills next year as councillors try to plug a £320,000 budget hole.

South Holland District Council cabinet members are due to meet tonight to discuss a draft 2016/17 budget which would see the area’s share of council tax bills going up by between £3.33 and £10 for the financial year starting on April 1.

The challenges have been met as a result of the prudent financial management of the council and innovative income generation

South Holland District Council interim chief accountant Ken Trotter

It would be the first council tax rise in South Holland for six years since the average Band D figure went up from £153.13 in 2009-10 to £157.03 on 2010-11, a hike of 2.55 per cent.

Since 2010-11, the average council tax bill has either been frozen and slightly reduced, relative to inflation.

But in a report prepared for tonight’s cabinet meeting, the district council’s interim chief accountant Ken Trotter said: “During 2015/16, the council has continued to suffer financial pressures in various services due to public sector funding reductions and continuing low returns on cash deposits.

“The challenges have been met as a result of the prudent financial management of the council and innovative income generation.”

The report went on to reveal that nearly 60 per cent of council tax payers in South Holland fall into Bands A and B where the proposed annual precept increase for 2016/17 would be £3.33 and £3.89 respectively.

It would see the district council’s share of the council tax bill for a Band A home go up from £103.23 in 2015/16 to £106.56 for the year starting on April 1, while Band B bills would rise from £120.43 last year to £124.32 for the coming year.

In a column for our sister newspaper, the Spalding Guardian, last month, portfolio holder for finance Coun Peter Coupland said: “There are financial shortfalls to be filled to ensure that frontline services such as weekly refuse collections, elderly sheltered care and environmental services are maintained at a level no lower than at present.

“South Holland District Council is in a better position than most authorities to be able to cover government cuts in funding, whilst maintaining good levels of service.

“However, more cash will be required to balance budgets in the run up to 2020.”

We want to keep South Holland frontline services safe

Council tax bills will face hike from April