Tuesday, 26 June 2007

Local Tax in UK rises twice as fast as earnings

The average UK local, or council, tax bill has effectively doubled in the past decade, rising twice as fast as income.

A report by the Halifax Building Society reveals the tax has risen from an average of around £560 to £1,100.

The tax has risen three times higher than the rate of inflation, double the increase in average earnings. In Fact it is now 91% higher than when Tony Blair first took office, while average earnings have only increased by 51%

The Local Government Association (LGA), that represents councils in England and Wales, has dismissed the report, saying it was a rehash of old information.

Well yes… Some of it, by necessity, must be around 10 years old, or the information would not be there to make the comparison, something the LGA no doubt devoutly wishes were the case.

It certainly warrants being repeated again and again so the local electorate can keep it in the forefront of their minds during local elections. Again something the LGA would be keen to avoid.

The Halifax’s chief economist, Martin Ellis, said that they were just: “highlighting the point that there's been a big, big, increase and certainly much sharper than the increase in either prices, or average earnings”

Anna Pearson, of Help The Aged pointed out that: ”When you compare council tax rises with the meagre rise in the basic state pension, you can see why pensioners are having to deprive themselves of basic necessities to get by.

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