Ashby Councillor Defends Leicestershire County Council Tax Increase

By Graham Hill

1st Feb 2021 | Local News

Ashby councillor Nick Rushton has explained Leicestershire County Council's five per cent council tax hike, saying: "We were left with no alternative".

Council officials say the rise is designed to help the authority 'weather the Covid crisis'.

The county council has announced the increase which will see a standard two per cent increase – the maximum the authority can put up bills by – as well as a three per cent adult social care precept increase.

County Council to increase council tax payments

Cllr Rushton - the county council leader - said: "We've had to go for the maximum because of the particular pressures we are under, and this is always exacerbated by the fact that we are the lowest funded council in the country.

"We are left with no alternative – I do not want to be going to cabinet, council or the media to have to justify cuts in services, especially in this Covid times, let alone normal times.

On most people's bills that three per cent increase is a different line. What people must not be confused by is that that number does not cover the cost of adult social care, between 75 and 80 per cent of our main budget is taken up by adult social care and children's services.

"So even though it's a separate line on the bill don't think that covers it, this is just a bit of flexibility that the Government has given us to deal with the pressures on social care.

"The total increase only equates to £1.25 per week, which in my experience is only half the price of a coffee at Costa."

The three per cent adult social care increase will generate more than £9 million, which will help the council "weather the Covid crisis," according to lead member for finance, Councillor Byron Rhodes.


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