Wednesday 26th April 2017,
North Yorks Enquirer

“Talking To The Wall”

“Talking To The Wall”

A reader in the District of Hambleton shares email correspondence . . . about stealth tax and cynical self-service at Hambleton District Council . . .

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From: [redacted] Sent: 13 March 2016 07:52
To: Customer Services – Hambleton District Council
Subject: 5.6% Rise in Council Tax

Hi,

I’d be very grateful if you could explain to me why Council Tax for Hambleton District Council has been increased by 5.6%?

Kind Regards,

[redacted]

Resident

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From: Louise.Branford-White@hambleton.gov.uk
Sent: 16 March 2016 08:13
To: [redacted] Subject: RE: 5.6% Rise in Council Tax

[redacted], Hi,

Further to your query below, I comment as follows:

For the financial year 2016-17 the government allowed low charging shire districts like Hambleton to increase their council tax by either no more than 2% or by no more than £5 for a band D property.  As Hambleton have had no increase to their council tax charge since 2010 a decision was made to increase by £5 resulting in the band D figure rising from £89.48 to £94.48.  Although our charge is one of the lowest in the country a £5.00 increase does then present a 5.6% increase. 

Thank you

Louise

Louise Branford-White

Head of Service – Finance (s151)

Hambleton District Council

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From: [redacted]

Sent: 16 March 2016 09:40

To: Louise.Branford-White@hambleton.gov.uk

Subject: RE: 5.6% Rise in Council Tax

Hi Louise,

Thanks for the prompt response.

Having read your answer I can only deduce that the reasoning behind such an increase in local Tax from HDC is simply because ‘you can’, so ‘you have’ increased the rate of Tax – nothing more. Surely there has got to be a reason or rationale for increasing local taxation that is transparent and obvious to the ratepayer?

After all 5.6% is a very significant rise in these times of austerity. Perhaps the increase in taxation is due to increased local services, or an increase in the number of staff at HDC, or an increase in pay for councillors and executives?

If there is no reason, please state.

Kind Regards,

[redacted]

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Subject: 5.6% Rise in Council Tax

Date:   Tue, 5 Apr 2016 19:35:55 +0100

From: [redacted]

To:       info@hambleton.gov.uk

CC:      news@nyenquirer.uk

Hi,

Could you please explain why I am paying an extra £19.55 (NYCC Adult Social Care) in my Council Tax Bill that was recently sent to my home?

Also could you please confirm that my assumption (please refer to the email thread above*) that the recent 5.6% increase in Council Tax for HDC was applied [for local people to pay] to fund the generous pay rises that were awarded to 9(?) senior staff and Councillors within HDC is correct? It is only fair to allow you time to clarify a response to this matter, unfortunately Louise (Head of Service – Finance) has failed to respond to my email.

I’m certain that there will be a careful strategy behind this 5.6% rise and I’m keen to understand why I’m paying this extra in local taxation from HDC.

Kind Regards,

[redacted]

Resident

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http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/10287418.Council_chiefs_defend_ten_per_cent_pay_rise_for_chief_executive/

HDC_Trough

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