North Devon residents will pay nearly £85 more in council tax this year

The average home in North Devon will pay nearly £85 more in council tax in 2018/19 than last year.

North Devon Council (NDC) rubber-stamped its budget for the year at a full council meeting on Wednesday, with councillors agreeing a 2.99 per cent increase – an extra 10p per week for a Band D home.

The decision means those in Band D properties will pay, on average, a total of £1,838.11 for the year ahead – an £84.72 increase on last year’s £1,753.39.

Devon County Council (DCC) take just over 72 per cent of the bill, with NDC and the police getting around 10 per cent. The fire authority (five per cent) and town and parish councils (three per cent) also get a share of the bill.

NDC will take an extra £5.16, while DCC will take an extra £63.27.

Police will ask for an extra £12 – a 6.81 per cent increase, while the fire authority will take an extra £2.44.

On average, town and parish councils will be taking an extra £1.85, although in Barnstaple the increase is £4.24.

What will council tax be spent on?

The county council says its change will mean more money for hard-pressed adult care and health, as well as services for vulnerable children and vital road maintenance.

DCC leader John Hart said: “We have always said our priority is to protect the most vulnerable in our society and I believe this target budget will help to do that.”

“But many people want us to spend more on our roads and that’s why I want to take up the Government’s unexpected offer of an extra one per cent on the council tax to be dedicated to our highways.”

NDC has cited a continued drop in government funding for its 2.99 per cent increase, but agreed not to cut parish and voluntary grants.

Leader Des Brailey said: “We’ve lost another eight per cent in government funding this year. This means it’s yet another year of making some tough decisions.

“As always, we will be looking at striking the tricky balance between increasing council tax and spending less on services and grants.”

Devon and Cornwall Police’s budget sees its precept increase by £1 a month, which Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez said would help towards an increase in police officers, and a roll out of body worn video equipment for officers.

Ms Hernandez said: “We do not take this step lightly. We know that many households operate on very tight budgets and have carefully considered the impact this would have.”


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