Lincolnshire

Senior county councillors back 3.5% council tax hike

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Senior county councillors have backed a 3.5% council tax hike as part of the authority’s budget plans.

The council’s executive proposed an increase in the general rate of 1.5%, plus an additional 2% for adult social care.

It means an average Band D property would see a council tax bill of £1,337.58, a £45 rise on last year.

Council leader, Martin Hill, said the budget was “positive” and will help to “protect frontline services”.

Lincolnshire County Council will discuss the budget proposals on February 21. Picture: Calvin Robinson.

A revised budget position puts the council at a £1.165 million surplus heading into the next financial year.

As part of its proposals, the council would make a £1.447 million contribution to a new development reserve which would be used to fund future projects.

It would also receive a social care support grant of £14.7 million from government in order to ease pressure on the service.

The budget plan will now go to full council for final approval on February 21.

The move comes as the council continues its campaign to lobby for fairer funding for the county.

Leader of Lincolnshire County Council Councillor Martin Hill

Councillor Hill said the authority needed a fair settlement in order to plan future budgets.

“Now that we have a government with a majority,” he said. “One would hope that the fairer funding and adult social care green paper would be brought forward.

“What we would really like is a four year settlement so that next year we can have a forward looking budget.”

Cuts to local government funding in recent years has forced the authority to look for other avenues of financial support, such as hikes in council tax.

The county council has seen a £50 million reduction in its revenue support grant, its main source of funding from government, over the past four years.

Meanwhile, Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Marc Jones, will propose a 4.1% increase for the force’s share of council tax.

City of Lincoln Council has also tabled a rise of 1.9% which is expected to return to councillors for approval next month.

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