Council Tax rises by £5 a year but borough is still poorest in Kent

Council Tax rises by £5 a year but borough is still poorest in Kent
Council Leader Nicolas Heslop

A meeting of the full Council voted for the 2.4 per cent rise, which will see the bill for services such as waste collection, parks, environmental health and planning reach £214.50 for a typical band D home from April.

This represents 11 per cent of the overall Council Tax bill, with the precepts aportioned as follows: Kent County Council £1,351.26 (4 per cent increase); Kent Police £203.15 (5.2 per cent rise); Kent Fire and Rescue £79.29 (up 2 per cent); and Parish Councils, which average a year £60.94 (an increase of 5.9 per cent).

That means overall a band D resident will pay £1,909.14 a year, compared to £1,875.70 in Tunbridge Wells.

Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council’s income from Council Tax for the next financial year is forecast to be £11million.

It is also set to receive Government core funding and a grant to support housing growth totalling £5.7million.

The Council has seen its core funding decrease by around 65 per cent since 2011 and is lower than all other borough councils in Kent.

Government funding per person in the borough will stand at £17.64 – compared to £20.12 in Tunbridge Wells.

The next lowest in the county is Sevenoaks at £19.16 per capita, while the highest is Thanet (£36.33).

The core funding without the housing element has reduced from £4,860,144 in 2013-14 to just £2,214,110 for the last financial year.

Nicolas Heslop, the Council Leader, said: “Against a backdrop of shrinking funding from central Government we are driving down our costs and delivering services more efficiently.

“We have reduced our overheads by nearly £3million since 2016 and will continue to do so while also investing in areas that people care about, including a new climate change strategy which will be a major priority for the years ahead.”

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