North Lincolnshire

North Lincolnshire Council will publish list of councillors who failed to pay council tax

North Lincolnshire Council will publish the names of councillors who fail to pay council tax under new plans.

The council’s cabinet unanimously voted through the plans after a freedom of information request revealed that a senior councillor was taken to court for failure to pay a sum from the 2016/17 finanical year.

Names of members who do not pay council tax on time will be published every six months on the council’s website from the next financial year.

It comes after former mayor of North Lincolnshire, Councillor Helen Rowson, was one of four councillors in East Yorkshire and Lincolnshire found to have been taken to court for failure to pay.

Councillor Rowson said: “The council tax was not for the property where I live. It related to my late father’s home, which until recently has been tied up in probate and in the hands of solicitors. There is no excuse and I am genuinely sorry for this oversight, and I paid the amount in full.”

Leader of North Lincolnshire Council, Rob Waltham, said that the plans will show the council is being transparent.

“It’s really important to reassure council tax payers that councillors are not treated any differently,” he said.

“Also I think it generally sets the tone for transparency across the council that people understand that councillors are no different to any other resident.

“They need to pay their council tax and they need to pay it on time and most importantly we don’t need to leave freedom of information requests to tell us.

“Subject to data protection laws, we will make sure that information is put out to the public at a suitable time frame.”

The council recently increased council tax for 2018/19 by 4.99% at its budget meeting in February.

Band A properties, making up the majority of homes in the region, will pay an extra £49.95 from April.