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County council set to freeze tax but cut 200 jobs
8:44am Thursday 10th January 2013 in News
A COUNCIL tax freeze has been proposed by Worcestershire County Council’s cabinet for the next financial year.
The recommendation to accept the Government’s offer of a council tax freeze grant for 2013/14 was universally accepted at the cabinet meeting on Tuesday.
The deal will cost the council £3.3 million based on a 1.9 per cent rise and will now go to a vote at full council on Thursday, February 14. The freeze will keep the average band D council tax bill at £1,440 a year.
Conservative councillor Adrian Hardman, leader of the county council, said: “This is the start of a formal consultation process and we really want to hear Worcestershire residents’ views on what we propose.
None of it is set in stone yet.
“Our Have Your Say roadshows that took place during November and December last year again helped us to identify what our residents feel is most important to them.”
Conservative councillor John Campion, cabinet member for localism and communities, said: “People haven’t seen wages rise or incomes rise so we are taking the steps we can to avoid increasing the pressure on households.”
Of the £1,440 average yearly band D bill, 72 per cent goes to County Hall and the rest is split between the police, fire service, district council and possibly a parish council.
The 2013/14 budget also identified where savings would need to be made. Two hundred jobs will be axed at County Hall as well as £4 million being saved by reduced at-home care for the elderly and vulnerable.
About £1.2 million will be cut from activities for young people and £400,000 will be saved by encouraging more people to volunteer to run services such as libraries.
A budget consultation will now take place until Friday, February 1.