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COUNCIL TAX AT STANDARD SPENDING AND TRANS RELIEF SET

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Environment Secretary John Gummer today revealed the new council tax at standard spending and details of the extens...
Environment Secretary John Gummer today revealed the new council tax at standard spending and details of the extension of the transitional relief scheme as part of his 1994-95 finance settlement for councils.

Mr Gummer told the Commons: 'There is practically no meaning in talking about average taxes.

'However, for the sake of grant distribution we have to identify notional taxes for each valuation band, for a standard level of spending - the so called 'Council Tax for Standard Spending' or CTSS. My proposals incorporate a CTSS for Band C of £468.

'I emphasise again, however, that this is merely an element in the grant formula. It is neither a prediction of individual council tax bills nor a national average'.

Turning to the extension of the council tax transitional relief system, Mr Gummer said: 'One reason why the bills of individual households will vary is the effect of council tax transitional relief, which has reduced the bills of those who faced the largest increases from the move from one taxation system to another.

'Some 3.7 million households are benefiting from transitional relief this year.

'In line with our commitment to continue transitional relief for two years at least, I propose to make available in addition to the central support I have already announced some £130 million to provide continued relief in 1994-95.

'In general, taxpayers will receive last year's relief less an amount ranging from £67 a year for band A to £137 a year for band H'.

Mr Gummer said council tax has now been successfully established as the means of local funding of local services. He commended 'the constructive role of local authorities and their associations in preparing for its introduction'.

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