Campaigner’s tax plea is rejected

A council tax campaigner has had his banding claim turned down. Derek Jamieson, of Chells Manor, Stevenage, claimed there were countless incorrect banding situations in the town. The father-of-two said that, since 1993, each home in his road alone had ove

A council tax campaigner has had his banding claim turned down.

Derek Jamieson, of Chells Manor, Stevenage, claimed there were countless incorrect banding situations in the town.

The father-of-two said that, since 1993, each home in his road alone had overpaid by just over £4,000, a total overpayment of £100,000.

He found out that his home in Wheatlands, along with 21 others, are a band higher than the houses in Downlands.

But his claim was rejected by the Valuations Office Agency (VOA).

Mr Jamieson said: "The VOA tell me that three-bedroom homes in Wheatlands are worth more than four-bedroom homes in Downlands!"

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Since appearing in The Comet, Mr Jamieson has been inundated with Stevenage people with similar situations.

He said: "By my own investigations there are over 40 homes misbanded in the Chells Manor area, some living next door to exact homes, but banded differently.

"I don't know anyone who thinks that two identical homes next door to each other should pay different bands of council tax, but this actually occurs in Wheatlands, Boxfield Green, Doncaster Close and Uplands.

"Again, the Government's own department, the VOA, believe this to be correct."

A spokesman for the Valuations Office Agency said: "The Valuations Office Agency uses evidence to assess which band a house should be in based on the house's value on the valuation date of April 1 1991.

"That set valuation date is used to ensure consistent application of bands across England and Wales.

That evidence has shown that the property in question is correctly banded.