Council tax to rise by 88p a week for average household in the area
COUNCIL tax for Cheshire East residents will rise by 3.75 per cent after being frozen for five years.
The increase means Band D property residents will have to pay an extra 88p per week - £1,261.95 a year compared to £1,216.34 the previous year.
It comes after the central government grant allocated to councils was slashed by more than £16m for 2016-17, presenting the council with what members say are ‘the toughest financial challenges it has faced in seven years’.
But council officers say vital front-line services will continue to be protected.
Coun David Brown, Conservative deputy leader of Cheshire East Council, said the council had never faced such a situation before but said it was in ‘a far stronger position than many other authorities’ due to ‘strong financial management’. He added that many other authorities were asking their residents to meet a greater increase.
He said: “I congratulate our finance team on developing a robust budget in very challenging circumstances.
“Due to the effective way we have delivered services in recent years, we are in a far stronger position than many other authorities. I hope that residents will understand our position and will recognise that we continue to deliver excellent value for money.”
He added: “While our increase is 3.75 pc, some local authorities are increasing their council tax by 3.99 pc with the prospect of the same level of increase annually for five years.”
Commenting on the Express facebook page, Sam Redfern-Perry didn’t support the increase.
She said: “Macclesfield is the town Cheshire East forgot so I don’t think we should have an increase until we start to see Cheshire East investing in Macclesfield.”
Siobhan Louise Kelly said: “I would happily pay more when all the dog muck is cleaned off the paths near me.”
But Simon Yates said he did not object to the increase. He said: “I’m surprised it hasn’t been asked for sooner. People have to accept these services we take for granted cost money and ultimately we are the providers of that money.”
Labour councillor Laura Jeuda said the money should be used to keep front line services: “Most people are prepared to pay more for services but not for councillors’ allowances.”
The council’s Cabinet will be asked to recommend the increase to council at its next meeting on February 25.