North Devon proposes to freeze council tax
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Councillors will be asked to approve budget that keeps tax and most charges at the same levels.
NORTH Devon Council is planning to put a freeze on council tax and most of its charges for the next 12 months, it has been announced.
The proposals are part of the budget and finance package going before the council’s executive committee on Tuesday.
Council Leader Brian Greenslade told the Gazette the council Lib Dem and independent administration believed the freeze was necessary for local people because of the ongoing poor economic climate.
“I think the people of North Devon will be pleased they will not be asked to pay any more for their services,” he said.
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“Our grant settlement from the government was pretty poor, but we are continuing to lobby on that with support from Nick Harvey.”
As well as a recommendation not to increase the district council’s share of council tax for the financial year 2013-14, the executive agenda contains proposals to keep most parking and service charges at the same levels.
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Mr Greenslade said in an effort to balance the budget the council had been working hard to cut costs: “We don’t expect to have to make any major redundancies. Yes, there will be some cuts, but a lot of it is going to come from joint working with Torridge District Council and improving the way we work.
“With Torridge we now think we have reduced costs by about a million across both councils since we started joint working and some good savings have been made in waste and recycling through the efforts of Rodney Cann and Ricky McCormack.
“There will obviously be some reduction in service provision, because of the inevitable consequence of the government grant reduction, not just this year but the year after as well.”
Devon County Council Leader John Hart, has also said he is going to propose the authority’s freeze its share at a budget meeting on February 21.