Parkside

Bromsgrove District Council has set its budget and Council Tax for the coming year.

At last night’s meeting (Feb 27) the district council approved a balanced budget of £11,826m for the year, featuring no cuts to services and a 2.99% Council Tax increase.

The budget was approved alongside changes to the council’s Council Tax Support scheme so that working age claimants on low incomes can get up to 85% relief on their Council Tax bills and care leavers up to the age of 25 can get up to 100% relief on their bills.

The 2.99% rise in the district council’s portion of the local Council Tax means its charge to the average band D property is now £223, an increase of £6.47 for the year.

Cllr Brian Cooper, Bromsgrove District Council’s portfolio holder for Finance and Enabling, said: “We have delivered a balanced budget without a reduction in services to residents or the use of our cash balances. The council faces a challenging few years ahead due to well publicised problems with local government funding, and so it is with some reluctance that we have increased our part of the council tax.”

The average overall Council Tax bill in Bromsgrove District, which also includes the charges for Worcestershire County Council, the parish councils, the police, and the fire and rescue service, will be £1,809.57 this year. That’s an increase of 4.48% or £77.56 for the year.

The Council Tax Support scheme is the council’s way of helping people on low incomes to pay their Council Tax.

Cllr Geoff Denaro, Leader of Bromsgrove District Council, said: “From providing parks to emptying the bins, we’ve set out a balanced budget to provide the things residents tell us they want, with no cuts despite a financial climate that continues to be very challenging for us and all councils. We have also moved to protect working age people on low incomes, not just pensioners, from the increases across the board by increasing our Council Tax Support Scheme.”