Council Tax: 4% rise agreed, but most households will see bills going down
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But a “cost of living payment” of £150 from the government means most households will actually see their bills go down for the year ahead, starting in April.
The four per cent increase was agreed today (Wednesday) when Falkirk Council met to set the budget for the year ahead.
Labour councillors voted against the motion while Conservative councillors abstained, which meant the motion was approved as part of the council’s revenue budget.
A four per cent increase should take a band D charge from £1.225.58 up to £1,274.60 – a rise of £49.02.
However, around 56,000 council taxpayers in Falkirk district will receive a payment of £150 towards their council tax.
For the vast majority – around 55,000 – the council says that the £150 will be reflected in their monthly payments, which will actually go down.
This means that around three-quarters of households will effectively pay less council tax in 2022 to 2023 than they did in 2021 to 2022.
Councillors defended the rise saying that last year Falkirk Council’s band D charge was £82.42 below the Scottish average of £1,308 and the fifth lowest in mainland Scotland.
Councillors also agreed to use £5 million of reserves to balance the books in order to set this year’s budget – despite warnings from auditors that this is unsustainable.
But they believe using reserves as part of a strategy to drive transformation that will save money in the long term can be justified.
Four per cent increase in council tax at a glance
BAND A £817.05 rises to £849.74 – an increase of £32.68
BAND B £953.23 rises to £991.36 – an increase of £38.13
BAND C £1,089.40 rises to £1,132.98 – an increase of £43.58
BAND D £1,225.58 rises to £1,274.60 – an increase of £49.02
BAND E £1,610.28 rises to £1,674.69 – an increase of £64.41
BAND F £1,991.57 rises to £2,071.23 – an increase of £79.66
BAND G £2,400.09 rises to £2,496.10 – an increase of £96.00
BAND H £3,002.67 rises to £3,122.78 – an increase of £120.11