Take con­trol of spend­ing de­ci­sions

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Points Of View -

Jonathan Dance has writ­ten a sound ar­ti­cle on com­mu­nity coun­cils. The gist of his let­ter is that you will pay more tax if you say yes. Cor­rect. But this tax al­ready ap­plies through­out the bor­ough and with no shrieks of com­plaint as it is such a small per­cent­age of the to­tal.

Un­like the rest of your coun­cil tax, spent by county and bor­ough coun­cils on what­ever they de­cide, a ‘parish tax’ is held by your elected parish or com­mu­nity coun­cil to be spent only on the projects you want within your own com­mu­nity.

Cur­rent gov­ern­ment pol­icy is for more and more gov­er­nance to be passed down to lesser author­i­ties, thus the low­est au­thor­ity of all – the parish or com­mu­nity coun­cil – is be­ing given ever in­creas­ing au­thor­ity.

Coun­cil taxes are cur­rently frozen and likely to stay that way at least un­til 2020. Coun­cils still have in­creas­ing costs, but no in­creas­ing rev­enues and will thus be able to spend less and less. As Jonathan quite rightly says, parish/com­mu­nity coun­cils have no such rev­enue gath­er­ing re­stric­tions. It gives au­thor­ity di­rectly to your com­mu­nity to de­cide how much – or how lit­tle – will be spent in your area.

With­out a com­mu­nity charge in your coun­cil tax, your com­mu­nity’s share of the to­tal coun­cil tax pot will, in line with the bor­ough coun­cil’s, be­come less and less. A yes vote grants you the flex­i­bil­ity of choice to do more in your com­mu­nity – or to do noth­ing at all. Ian Wolver­son Chilm­ing­ton Green

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.