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Council Tax Rise of 1.99% Proposed By Surrey County Council

Published on: 27 Jan, 2014
Updated on: 27 Jan, 2014

Surrey County Council wants a rise in its share of council tax by 1.99%. – just below the 2% threshold for which a public poll must be held.

It is the third year in a row the county council has proposed a rise, despite the Government’s cash incentive to freeze it.

The leader of Surrey County Council, David Hodge.

The leader of Surrey County Council, David Hodge.

The leader of Surrey County Council, David Hodge, said: “We’ve said we need 2.5%, because any more means wasting up to £2 million on a referendum, and while it puts more pressure on services we’ll still be able to provide what residents expect with this increase.

“With the number of vulnerable adults we help increasing by 1,000 over the next three years at a cost of £25 million and a leap in pupil numbers meaning we need to spend £327 million on school places by 2019, the pressure on services from demographic changes is enormous.

“On top of these challenges, we have to cope with the impact of other costs that are also completely out of our control, such as the bill of up to £10 million to fix our roads after the recent floods and the £5 million we spent last year on repairing the damage caused by ice and snow.”

Surrey County Council has said that the proposal will allow key services to be preserved as it continues to face the challenges of rising demand and shrinking government funding.

It added that despite making savings of £200 million since 2010, all these have been wiped out by a falling government grant and increasing demand for services. The county council has identified a further £200 million of savings over the next four years.

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test 5 Responses to Council Tax Rise of 1.99% Proposed By Surrey County Council

  1. Bernard Parke Reply

    January 27, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    Due to the vagrancies of this unfair tax it is those householders struggling to make ends meet in the so called “affordable” houses will suffer the most

  2. Michael Bruton Reply

    January 29, 2014 at 11:35 am

    Local government is gluttonous and profligate – whichever political party is in control. But if one probes below the surface one could halve the numbers employed by county and town halls.

    There is for example no need for Surrey to involve itself with education. It could turn all of its schools into academies and encourage all new schools to be free schools. All surrey schools would therefore be financed centrally.

    But local education authorities survive because they are the main source of money for councils. Cut out schools and Surrey County Council could do away with its vast hoard of staff who “advise” on education. Who knows – we might even then close down and sell off County Hall and relocate to somewhere cheaper and smaller.

    Surrey has two main tiers of local government. Do we need two tiers with vast hoards of councillors and staff in each? Twenty years ago Berkshire County Council was abolished and its boroughs became unitary authorities. Surrey County Council is located in one such unitary authority – Kingston. That seems to work ok. Wiltshire abolished all of its borough councils a few years ago and seems to survive OK as a single unitary authority.

    But councillors like the status, power and nowadays the generous pay and perks that go with the job. So I do not hold my breath that Surrey County Council will undergo the changes that would stop its continual bleating about the need for more of our money.

  3. Bernard Parke Reply

    January 29, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    I endorse the comments made by Mr Bruton.

    Guildford borough alone, not to mention its county councillors, has 48 councillors whilst only 10 make policy.
    Surely one borough councllor per ward would be sufficient and in doing so help to reduce the council tax burden.

  4. Anna-Marie Davis Reply

    February 4, 2014 at 11:23 am

    Or is it to pay for the Surrey County Council pension defecit, third largest in the country……

  5. Mary Bedforth Reply

    February 14, 2015 at 11:47 am

    Perhaps we should all move to West Sussex.

    Further council tax freeze for residents in West Sussex. Residents will still pay £1,161.99 for a Band D property for county services.

    Budget ‘to include £30m road spend’.

    Residents in West Sussex are to have their council tax frozen for the fifth year running after the county council set the annual budget for 2015-16.

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