South Somerset District Council freezes council tax

CLLR Ric Pallister.

CLLR Ric Pallister.

First published in News Chard & Ilminster News: Photograph of the Author by

BILL payers in South Somerset won’t shell out any more for at least one section of their council tax in the coming year.

Members of South Somerset District Cou-ncil unanimously voted to freeze its share of council tax for the fourth year in a row.

Key points of the 2014/15 budget include:

  • £100,000 fund to help residents on the Levels and Moors affected by the floods.
  • A further £1.2million towards affordable homes.
  • No increases to car parking charges.
  • No closures of council-run facilities.
  • £1 million additional investment towards infrastructure and economic growth in South Somerset.

Leader of the council Cllr Ric Pallister said: “I am extremely pleased that we have been able to generate the savings needed to balance the books without any impact on the services that matter most to the residents of South Somerset and without the need to raise council tax.

“A great deal of hard work by all the staff at the council has made this possible and despite severe financial pressures facing us in the coming years, our financial situation is sound and we are well prepared to meet those challenges.

“By generating savings through greater internal efficiencies, we have also enabled additional investment in our economy and housing to meet local need.

“All in all this is a very good budget that has maintained services and not required us to make any new financial demands on the pockets of local people.”

Cllr Tim Carroll, Deputy Leader and executive member for finance, said: “South Somer-set has seen a reduction of 52.9% over four years in our main Government grant (Revenue Support Grant) and the other two main income streams of council tax and business rate receipts have remained relatively static.

“Despite this we have managed to retain an adequate budget to not only maintain the same levels of services to our residents but also to commit a significant sum to infrastructure projects and flood assistance.”

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