UK Council Tax to Rise 5%
As the public awaits relief from the pandemic, the government has dropped another tax bomb on. 53% of UK councils have proposed an increase of 5% in council tax starting from April. This increase could potentially cripple households already struggling across the country.
An increase of 5% currently stands at seven times the rate of inflation. The fact that the councils needed to raise the tax so drastically gives some perspective on how bad the economic situation of the social care system is. The public is already suffering from high unemployment levels, while businesses bear the brunt of both the pandemic and Brexit. Increased council tax is the last thing people need. The chancellor is under immense pressure to extend furlough support to workers who have been badly hit by the pandemic. If the councils go ahead with the proposed plans, they will put added economic burden on British households.
How much more will people be paying then?
The tax rise will have a drastic impact on British middle-class households. For instance, Band D households in Dorset will have to pay £84.6 more, while similar households in Cheshire and Wiltshire will have to pay £75.05 and £75.60 more respectively. The highest rise in council tax payments will be seen in Bristol where the average household in the Band D category will have to pay £87.74 more! Add in the £15 that the Avon and Somerset Police plan to charge and the total tax crosses the £100 mark. As for the Band H households in Bristol, they will have to pay double. This means they face a rise of over £200 in a single year!
Government’s lack of action
There is no doubt that the nation is going through uncertain times. The government has a lot on its plate which is probably one reason why it had not been able to provide a direction to the councils. In such circumstances, the councils have had to determine their course of action as per the Adult Social Care Program. The current Tory government had promised an improved social care system back in 2019 but that plan doesn’t seem to be coming to fruition anytime soon.