Monday 13 March 2017

Council Tax in Barnet to rise by 3% for adult social care

Barnet Council are raising local council tax by 3% to pay for adult social care. Being a Conservative Council and for some reason having a rather odd relationship with tax, the truth and facts, they have chosen to claim that they are not raising Council tax and that this is simply a precept! The government has given councils the option to add a "precept" of up to 3% and Barnet have taken advantage to raise this by the maximum amount. In a press release, Leader of the Council, Councillor Richard Cornelius said:
“Applying the social care precept is not a decision we have taken lightly, but given the contribution many of our older residents have made over their lifetimes it is the right thing for us to do. I am proud there has been no overall increase in residents’ Council Tax bills for each of the past six years. This means our residents have seen a 16 per cent real terms    reduction in Council Tax since 2010/11."
 In other words, the council has cut their budgets by far too much and have now had to raise it by nearly TWICE THE ANNUAL RATE OF INFLATION. Now many in the local Conservative party and their fellow tavellers think it is clever to mess around with the lives of the elderly and vulnerable. The Barnet Eye doesn't. The amount of council debt in the  2015/16 Final Statement of Account is simply staggering.  The obsession with tax cuts has blinded the council to its core purpose, which is to ensure the people of Barnet have a pleasant and safe environment and our elderly and vulnerable people need a secure lifestyle. Although none of us want to pay more tax, I am pleased that the council are at least starting to acknowledge the issue that they have damaged the finances by cutting too much. This inflation busting increase is at least a step on the way. I just wish they could be a bit more honest about it.  Then again, whenn do politicians ever tell the truth?

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