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‘Astronomical’ council tax rise should be subject to referendum – Tory MS

05 Feb 2024 2 minute read
Council tax bill.

Emily Price

A Tory MS has called for a local referendum on an “astronomical” council tax rise which has been approved for his constituency.

On Tuesday, Denbighshire County Council gave the go ahead for a council tax increase of 9.34% – the highest percentage increase in north Wales relative to how much money it gets from the Welsh Government.

The Welsh Conservatives say proposed council tax increases in north Wales are “excessive” during a cost of living crises.

The Welsh Tory Senedd group is calling on the Welsh Government to implement a cap on council tax rises in Wales.

The cap would mean councils would have to hold a local referendum in order to raise council tax above a 5% threshold.

Wales’ finance minister Rebecca Evans has said councils will have to make “difficult decisions” despite council tax rises and increased budgets.

Shadow local government minister, Sam Rowlands has called for a review of the funding formula and urged councils to use reserves to keep council tax low.

Cap

Vale of Clwyd MS Gareth Davies, said: “This astronomical council tax rise approved by Denbighshire Country Council will be a punishment on hardworking people who are being used to balance the books of councils running deficits due to the Welsh Government’s out of date funding formula.

“Local Government has been devolved to Cardiff Bay since 1999 and it is the decision of the Welsh Government how much funding they provide to councils. They need to protect the Welsh people from tax hikes of the proportions we have seen this year.

“We need swift action from the Welsh Government to place a cap on council tax rises at 5% council tax rises of this magnitude are unacceptable and should be subject to a referendum.”

The Welsh Government was invited to comment.


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Ernie The Smallholder
Ernie The Smallholder
5 months ago

The council tax is unfair and the Tories had the chance to change it during the 2010-15 coalition where the LDs had a system of local income tax ready to implement and the Tories then refused it. Money is short because the Westminster regime controls the purse strings. For example: Wales pays the equivalent of 3.6% of its GDP in defence spending, yet Germany and France only spend 1.6% of their GDP and they have more commitments. We need to tax and gear our policies according to our own demands of our own people. It will nearly always be different… Read more »

Richard Davies
Richard Davies
5 months ago

In addition to what you’ve correctly stated, one of the first things david cameron did as prime minister was a huge cut to local government funding. Some councils suffered a cut of 90%, the average was about 80%. This had consequences for us in Cymru.

Rhddwen y Sais
5 months ago

We need an efficient education system, a working health system and a fully functional international airport for starters as a nation we currently sponge too much off our neighbours.

Why vote
Why vote
5 months ago

The Labour regime should instigate this to show how caring they are towards the people of Wales, how they are looking out for our interests moving forward to the future. And don’t forget there is an election coming up.

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