Council Tax bills to rise by £78 a year from next week

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Council Tax bills to rise by £78 a year from next week



HARD-UP households in England will pay an £78 extra a year in council tax from next week – the second highest increase in the last decade.
The levy on average Band D property – the most common band to be in – will go up by 4.7 per cent, from £1,671 in 2018-19 to £1,750 in 2019-20, government documents revealed.
Getty – Contributor Home owners will be hit with council tax hikes of more than £100 within weeks
The increase is lower than the 5.1 per cent hike last year but is still the second highest council tax rise in the last decade.
The rise is well over twice the level of inflation, which records the rising cost of living and is currently 1.8 per cent.
Households in Greater London will face the highest percentage increase in their total bills at 5.1 per cent, with the average Band D council tax in the capital set to rise by £72 to £1,477 in 2019-20.
But households in “shire” council areas will continue to have the highest average Band D council tax of £1,826 in 2019-20, up from £1,749 in 2018-19.
Band D households in Rutland, in the East Midlands, face the highest average total council tax at £2,043, followed by the Nottingham and the newly-created Dorset Council, both at £2,038.
The lowest average total Band D council tax will be in Westminster at £755, followed by £770 in Wandsworth.How to find out how much your bill is going up by
The government has published the data on its website so you can check there. 
Alternatively, your council website will publish the information online so you can check how much your bill will be going up by.
Which? has also creased a handy table where you can search for your local authority, although the rate may vary depending on which parish you live in.
Why are council tax bills rising
Local authority funding has been cut by central government. It has fallen by 60 per cent in the last decade.
Local Authorites in England are only allowed to raise their council tax by 2.99 per cent, plus a further 2 per cent if they provide social care.
How council tax in England has changed over the last decade
The rules are different in Scotland and Wales, where bills are going up by an average of 6.5 per cent and 3.9 per cent respectively.
Northern Ireland has a rates system instead of council tax.
The Local Government Association warned that the council tax increases will not prevent the need for continued cuts to services.
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Councillor Richard Watts, chairman of the LGA’s Resources Board, said: “Faced with a Government funding settlement that assumes maximum council tax rises and such funding pressures, many councils feel they have little choice but to ask residents to pay more council tax again this year to help them try and protect their local services.
“With councils facing a funding gap of more than £3 billion this year, council tax rises will not prevent the need for continued cutbacks to local services.
“If the Government fails to adequately fund local government as part of the Spending Review there is a real risk to the future financial viability of some services and councils.”

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