Higher council tax bills for some Dearne folk

Doncaster Mayor Peter Davies
Doncaster Mayor Peter Davies

POLITICIANS have hit out at the Government for cutbacks that will mean higher bills for some Dearne people claiming council tax benefit.

But the mayor has promised the 32,000 poorest households in the borough, including Mexborough, Conisbrough and Denaby, will not be affected by the changes being introduced in April.

The Government has reduced its funding for council tax benefit by 10 per cent, and local councils now have to design their own schemes to support working-age people.

Mayor of Doncaster Peter Davies, said: “We have had to make difficult decisions which impact on thousands of people.

“Although we have been forced to make some cuts, I am pleased we are able to continue protecting pensioners and supporting our most vulnerable residents and those most at risk of financial hardship.

“We have retained the current system of full support for those on the lowest incomes such as income support.”

While those on the lowest incomes will be protected, those with higher incomes who still receive some council tax benefit will be affected.

Anyone with a higher income who receives council tax benefit will have to pay more towards their council tax than currently.

People who are not protected and receive child benefit for more than one child may have to contribute extra to their council tax if they have a higher income.

Second home owners also face changes, with full council tax charges being implemented on furnished properties and charges of an additional 50 per cent on properties that have remained empty and unfurnished for over two years.

Labour leader, Coun Glyn Jones, said: “The Tory-led Government continues to attack the hard working families of Doncaster.

“These are difficult decisions which have been forced on the council by savage Government cuts.

“Labour has done all it can to protect the most vulnerable people in our community.”