Surrey County Council plans 15% council tax hike

Surrey County Council wants to raise its Council Tax by 15% in the next financial year. The proposal will be tabled at the annual budget-setting meeting on 7 February.

Any Council Tax increase of more than 2% must be put to residents to vote. So if this is agreed, a referendum will take place on 4 May, alongside the local elections.

The County Council should not be looking to raise Council Tax by 15%, which is unfair and hits the poorest in our communities hardest.

The Conservative Government cut Surrey’s funding by £47m* last year and a further £38m* this year so it is not a surprise that Surrey County Council has a funding shortfall. But it should not be filled in this way.

Councils make communities better, by funding libraries, recycling schemes and by providing care to some of the most vulnerable people in society. What we need is a sustainable and fair funding settlement from the government, which gives Surrey the flexibility to ask residents for extra money to fund the full range of important local services that they value.

It is not just social care that’s under threat from the cuts that the County Council is planning for the future. Recycling schemes, libraries, road safety improvements and schools could all suffer.

Local government needs an end to this period of austerity and the solution must come from the government, not an unfair tax hike on Surrey residents.

 

*Figures taken from the Council’s Council Tax leaflet 2016/2017: https://www.surreycc.gov.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0008/84428/Council-Tax-2016_v3.pdf

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