Local people are being asked for their views on proposed changes to Bury’s Council Tax Support Scheme.
Council Tax Support is a means tested benefit to help people on low incomes with their Council Tax. The scheme is part funded by the Government, and part funded by the council.
The proposed changes will see some residents who receive Council Tax Support contributing more to their Council Tax.
Proposal 1: everyone should have to pay something towards their Council Tax
We are proposing that from April 2017 all working age households, who receive Council Tax Support, will be expected to pay the first 20% of their Council Tax regardless of their income.
If a household currently in receipt of Council Tax Support already pays something towards their Council Tax, then the extra 20% will be added to this figure.
Proposal 2: stop awarding some allowances for families who have more than two children
Council Tax Support is worked out by comparing a household’s income to a financial needs allowance figure. Part of the needs allowance figure is based on the number of children in the household.
From April 2017 we are proposing to cap the needs allowance at two children for:
– households which currently contain two or more children and who have a third or subsequent child after 1 April 2017
any new claims for Council Tax Support made after 1 April 2017 from households with more than two children.
This proposal will not affect:
– households already claiming Council Tax Support, which contain more than two children, unless another child is born
multiple births after 1 April 2017 (and the household is not already at their maximum of two children)
– wHere households merge
– households where the claimant or their partner is a pensioner
We are considering this proposal because similar changes will be made to Tax Credits and Universal Credit.
Under the current scheme an increase in a household’s Tax Credits, on the birth of a third child, is offset by the extra needs allowance in their Council Tax Support. After April 2017, if a household’s Tax Credits do not alter on the birth of a third child and we continue to award extra needs allowances, then their Council Tax Support entitlement would increase considerably.
The aim of this proposal is to ensure that people affected by the changes to Tax Credits and Universal Credit continue to receive a similar amount of Council Tax Support.
Have your say on the proposals
Please complete this form to let the Council know your views.
Details of the proposals, and how to take part in the survey, are available on the council’s website at http://ift.tt/2eqjYFi7
The closing date for this consultation will be Tuesday 15 November.
Paper copies of the consultation are available at council offices in Radcliffe, Bury and Prestwich.