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Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Brent Council Tax Freeze?

The next Brent Council Cabinet will be considering budget proposals.  As in previous years under Cllr Butt's leadership, there appears to have been fairly limited discussion of these within the Labour Group.  This is rather a failing since the Budget underlies all the Council's activities.

Just concentrating on the Council Tax issue for the moment.  The report, under paragraph 5.4 proposes to consult on the projected increases in 2017/18 and 2018/19.  Since the current proposals are for the maximum possible rise that can reasonably be obtained, that can only mean a potential limit to the rise or perhaps a freeze.  I have noted before that this effectively destroys the Council's finances in future years.  Cllr Muhammed Butt has in the past been a strong advocate of freezing the Council Tax, apart from for the very poorest in Brent, where he favoured one of the steepest Council Tax rises in London.  He was so intent on freezing Council Tax that he ignored a majority Labour Group vote on the issue.  I don't know if this was related to Cllr Mikey Pavey's resignation, but the members of the Labour Group will need to be on the look out that they are not ignored again. 

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