Tax rises set

COUNCIL tax is going up again. Hertfordshire County Council and North Hertfordshire District Council have agreed similar increases which are both likely to be rubber stamped at council meetings within the next fortnight. The county is raising its precept

COUNCIL tax is going up again.

Hertfordshire County Council and North Hertfordshire District Council have agreed similar increases which are both likely to be rubber stamped at council meetings within the next fortnight.

The county is raising its precept by five per cent, which for a Band D property is an increase of £49.18 a year bringing the yearly total to £1,034.13.

The district council is likely to agree a 4.9 per cent increase, a rise of £8.33 which means the amount it receives from each Band D property will be £178.39.


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Stevenage Borough Council has yet to decide on its precept for 2007/08.

Speaking about the council tax increase, Cllr David Beatty, the leader of Hertfordshire County Council, said: "This is the third year running that we have been able to propose an increase which has not gone above five per cent and still put significantly more money into frontline services.

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"But it's been a tough job to balance the books and this year we will have to make some changes to some services."

The full amount tax payers in North Hertfordshire and Stevenage will have to pay out will not be known until these figures are rubber stamped, and until Hertfordshire Police Authority sets its precept.

In Mid Beds, the figure is much clearer after Bedfordshire Police Authority set its precept for the next financial year.

An increase of five per cent will result in Band D properties paying £123.43 towards policing during 2007/08.

This is in addition to the £1,083.33 approved by Bedfordshire County Council, and the £104.73 precept outlined by Mid Beds District Council, which is expected to be agreed at a council meeting on March 1.

The cost of policing in Bedfordshire and Luton for the coming year will be just over £91m. This 4.4 per cent increase was set last Friday.

The Government provides £66.732m, or 73 per cent, of the total budget with the remaining £24.857m coming from council tax.

Peter Conniff, chairman of the police authority, said: "Despite some difficult decisions, we have managed to agree a budget that protects officer numbers at 1,250 and ensures neighbourhood policing teams will be rolled out across the area as promised, despite the Home Office withdrawing one third of the funding for police community support officers (PCSOs).

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