View more on these topics

Council Tax could rise by 3.9%, warns LGA

Council Tax bills could rise by 3.9% in certain areas from April 2007 according to a survey by the Local Government Association.

Research from 132 local authorities, undertaken by the LGA of draft Council Tax budgets, has found that overall the 2007/08 Council Tax rise will be less than the latest Retail Price Index of 4.4%.

However, the survey has also revealed that councils with the responsibility of caring for the elderly are facing intense pressures from the increasing number of elderly people needing care.

Also, the knock-on effects of the NHS deficit crisis has left many councils picking up the costs of care.

Recent figures found that almost seven out of 10 authorities can now only afford to provide care to people with the most substantial and critical needs.

The snapshot survey reinforces the findings of a recent report by the LGA which showed central government funding is not keeping pace with the needs of an ageing population and older peoples increasingly complex needs.

The Council Tax survey found that the average proposed rise for those councils with responsibility for social services and caring for the elderly is set to be 3.9%, while the average proposed district Council Tax rise is set to be 3.1%

Draft budgets are proposed and open to consultation with residents with the final budgets being set in February and March before Council Tax bills go out for the start of the financial year in April.

Sandy Bruce-Lockhart, chairman of the LGA, says: It is a tribute to the determination of councils across the country that they are doing everything they can to deliver an ever better deal for the taxpayer and keep the rises down to a real terms freeze, while doing the best they can to improve services for local residents.

However, for services apart from schools and other specific grant funded government priorities, government funding has increased by just 14% in real terms.

This is in stark contrast to the 90% provided to the NHS.

It is the Council Tax payer that has funded the unprecedented increase in spending, as government grant has not kept pace with the demands on local government, including the ageing population and the costs from new legislation.

She adds: “If the chancellor is not prepared to pay for providing the type of care the vast majority of people expect, then the government must be honest about what it is prepared to fund, the impact this will have on local services and the burden it is choosing to shift onto Council Tax payers.


Landlords say demand is high

Research from Paragon Mortgages reveals that landlords believe tenant demand for rental properties is at its highest rate ever. Almost a third of landlords surveyed stated that demand for rental property is growing or booming. This was an 8% increase over the previous quarter.

PACKAGING SUMMIT 2007: Packagers slam sourcing systems

The packaging community has given sourcing system Trigold and Mortgage Brain a vote of no confidence, claiming that their systems are not up to the standard they require.When asked whether either sourcing system was a useful tool in the packaging process, every packager at this year’s Mortgage Strategy’s Packaging Summit conference voted against both, calling […]

Relax chooses xit2 system

Relax Finance has chosen xit2’s Valuation Exchange to provide the online system for its panel manager Gateway Surveyors.

Money Partners Touch recruits BDM

Money Partners Touch, the direct-to-broker channel of Money Partners, has appointed Sheryl Andrew as business development manager for the North of England. Covering the areas of Yorkshire, the North East and the North West, Andrew will be responsible for developing the Money Partners Touch offer and building relationships by marketing direct to brokers and IFAs. […]

UK policy: Kate Moss and short-termism

“Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels,” said supermodel Kate Moss, who is not often credited for her insights into policy making. Perhaps she should be. In politics, as in matters of diet, the course of action that is the best over the long term is often not the most desirable course of action in the short term. Add the instant gratification of the democratic electoral cycle and, instead of good policy making, you sometimes get the equivalent to a midnight binge in front of the fridge.

Read more

Important information

Investment risks

The value of an investment and any income from it can fall as well as rise and you may not get back the amount originally invested. Forecasts and past performance are not a guide to future performance. Some information and statistical data herein has been obtained from sources we believe to be reliable but in no way are warranted by us as to their accuracy or completeness. These are Neptune’s views and as such this document is deemed to be impartial research. We do not undertake to advise you of any change to our views.


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up