Friday, 20 December 2013

Council Tax Support Grant - statement on the NMPC's website

The following has been copied from the NMPC's website:

Clerk’s statement:
Council Tax Support Grant

Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council, the Billing Authority, who will receive the grant from the Government for 2014/2015, has informed the Parish Council that the Council Tax Support Grant will not be passed on, which means that North Mymms Parish Council’s income in 2014/2015 will be nearly £10,000 less than in 2013/2014.

The background is that in 2013/2014 the Government gave a grant to Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council to offset the changes to the benefit system and the Borough Council passed on the Council Tax Support Grant to the Town and Parish Councils.  Since 2009 North Mymms Parish Council has kept the precept (parish council tax) at £176,800 and cut costs but in 2013/2014, as the Council Tax Support Grant of £9,801.72 was shown as income, in practice the parish precept was reduced to £166,998.28.

Local Government Minister Brandon Lewis MP, when announcing the local government finance settlement for 2014/2015, said  “…. we have been clear that we expect billing authorities to carry on passing on support to town councils and parishes to help mitigate any reduction in their taxbase due to the local Council Tax support scheme.”

Because Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council will not be passing on the Council Tax Support Grant, North Mymms Parish Council will have to consider a 6% shortfall of nearly £10,000 when deciding on the budget and precept for 2014/2015 in January.  Councillors will face a difficult choice between raising council tax or cuts to services and either way it is going to affect the residents of the parish.

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