As Diss Town Council prepares to decide final precept, how do towns across the area compare?
As Diss Town councillors prepare to decide on a potential 15.3 per cent rise in their part of the council tax bill, the Diss Express has looked at other town councils – both on and off patch – to see how much their residents are paying.
A final decision on the precept of Diss Town Council will be made on Wednesday. The increase could be 15.3 per cent – or £25.11 a year for a band D household – a rise from £162.92 to £189.03.
Diss has a band D equivalent tax base of 2,683 – the number of properties taxable. This has only seen a small increase on the previous year, up by just 14 homes.
In 2016/17, their precept was £149.90.
At Wednesday’s meeting, it was cited that a reduction in a grant from South Norfolk Council, from £19,728 to £10,713, and previous deferments of expenditure and not increasing the budget despite known reductions in income had resulted in the potential rise.
But how does this compare with towns both on and off the Diss Express patch? Note – all precept figures are for band D properties, per year. The tax base is expressed as band D equivalents.
Tax base: 1,667
2016/17 precept: £182
2017/18 precept: £180.16
Change: – £1.84
Plans for 2018/19: Redenhall with Harleston Town Council’s finance committee will meet on Monday to discuss the budget for the upcoming year.
Town clerk Lynda Ling said the issues facing Diss Town Council, such as reductions in funding from South Norfolk Council, would be the same for authorities across the area.
“I read the article about the precept and everything was 100 per cent spot on,” she said. “The cost of everything keep going up.”
Tax base: 791
2017/18 precept: £100.53
Plans for 2018/19: A band D household will pay £102.70 for the 2018/19 year – that is up by 2.15 per cent.
The town council’s responsibilities include the town hall, cemetery, the allotments at Victoria Mill, the skate park and the play area in Oak Crescent.
Town clerk Wendy Alcock told the Diss Express: “We have tried to keep our increase below inflation.
“The challenge is keeping the costs as low as possible and still trying to meet the statutory requirements we have and the needs of the community.
“Costs are going up for us, as they are for private households, like the utilities – they are all increasing.
“We are using cash reserves where we can, but not to the extent where it leaves us exposed when something comes along.”
Tax base: 1,298
2017/18 precept: £99.72
Plans for 2018/19: An increase of two per cent was approved by Framlingham town councillors on Thursday, which means a band D household will pay £101.71 for the upcoming financial year.
Town clerk Eileen Coe said using some tax base reserves, and additional houses having been built in the town, meant they had been able to budget “conservatively”.
Tax base: 5,602
2016/17 precept: £75.60
2017/18 precept: £77.12
Change: + £1.52
Plans for 2018/19: The precept for Wymondham will be £80.20 for a band D household – up from £77.12, which works out at about four per cent.