Consultation on council tax change

Nelson Town Hall
Nelson Town Hall

Pendle Council has launched a public consultation to get people’s views on proposed changes to its Council Tax Support Scheme.

The council is proposing that its own Council Tax Support Scheme continues to align with the national Housing Benefit Scheme.

No change is being proposed to reduce the maximum level of council tax support for working age claimants which will remain at 80%.

And pensioner claimants are not affected by proposed changes.

Last year the Government made changes to the national Housing Benefit Scheme as part of its welfare reform plans.

It also outlined that further changes are expected to be introduced in April next year.

As a result, Pendle Council is proposing that its Council Tax Support Scheme should be updated to reflect these changes.

Vince Green, Financial Services Manager, said: “We want to hear residents’ views on the proposed changes to our Council Tax Support Scheme.

“The changes would create a more efficient and streamlined Council Tax Support Scheme.

“This would mean that we wouldn’t need to consider reducing the level of council tax support or find savings from our other services to cover additional administration costs.”

To align the two schemes, some of the Council’s proposals include:

∙ removing family premium for new claims

∙ backdating Council Tax support for one month, rather than the current six months

∙ ceasing Council Tax support if claimant is out of the country for more than one month

∙ limiting the number of dependent children which people can claim for to a maximum of two for new claimants.

Vince added: “We’ll continue to protect pensioners but all working age people currently receiving Council Tax Support may be affected by these proposals.

“You can have your say until Monday, October 31st. All of the comments we receive will be looked at and will inform the council’s final decision.”

For more information or to complete the consultation online go to www.pendle.gov.uk/cts2016

A PDF version of the survey can be downloaded to print out and return to the council or call 01282 661661 to request a paper copy.

If the changes are agreed they will be implemented on April 1st.