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Typical council tax bill in England ‘set to increase by nearly £65 in 2020/21’

By Vicky Shaw, PA Personal Finance Correspondent

The typical council tax bill in England is set to increase by £64.65, or 3.7%, in 2020/21, according to analysis.

The CIPFA – the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy – carried out the research.

It said that while council tax bills have increased consistently every year since 2012, the most recent survey findings indicate a second year in a row with a lower increase than the year before.

The findings were based on council tax for a band D property. Of 306 local authorities across England which responded to questionnaires, 304 will be increasing their council tax.

(PA Graphics)

Councillor Richard Watts, chair of the Local Government Association (LGA)’s resources board, said: “Faced with ongoing funding pressures such as homelessness and looking after vulnerable children, councils continue to be left with little choice but to ask residents to pay more to help them try and protect their local services.”

He continued: “Councils in England face an overall funding gap of almost £6.5 billion by 2025 just to cover basic inflationary and demographic pressures. Council tax income cannot be expected to plug the growing funding gaps they face.

“The Budget and the Spending Review need to provide a sustainable, long-term funding settlement for councils which means they can improve services and not just keep them going.”

A Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government spokesman said: “Next year, councils will have access to £49.2 billion to deliver services – the biggest annual real-terms increase in spending power in a decade – including an extra £1.5 billion for social care.

“Most residents can expect to see the lowest increase in council tax bills since 2016/17. We’ve also made sure they are protected by giving them the final say on excessive increases.”