Take control of spending decisions
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