An overwhelming majority of councils are set to raise council tax next year, with three-quarters proposing to increase bills by the maximum amount, the first results from LGC’s annual council tax tracker suggest.
Of the 36 councils that LGC identified as having so far published council tax plans for 2018-19, 35 are planning a rise, with 27 opting for the largest increase permitted before a referendum is triggered.
A total of 20 of the 25 top-tier councils are planning to raise council tax by 4.99%, including a 3% maximum adult social care precept.
Of the six counties assessed, Cumbria and Kent CCs, are the only ones to apply a social care precept below 3%, with both opting for 2%.
Newcastle, Plymouth and Stoke-on-Trent city councils are the other top-tier councils that are not proposing 4.99% increase.
However, all three have applied a 3% social care precept, with Newcastle adding a 1.95% rise to regular council tax, Stoke a 1% increase and Plymouth currently proposing a freeze.
Last year Stoke applied a 2% social care precept and increased general council tax by 1% to raise funds to support children in care.
The council’s 2018-19 consultation document says its investment plans were working, adding that it intends to apply a 1.99% rise in 2019-20 to “support the most vulnerable within our communities”.
East Cambridgeshire DC is the only one of 11 districts identified that is planning a council tax freeze.
Councils can increase regular council tax by up to 1.99% before a refrendum is triggered. At last year’s autumn statement councils with social care responsibilties were given the option of applying a precept of 6% over either two years or three years.
LGC Council Tax Tracker 2017
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Counties: Council Tax Tracker 2017
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