Lifeline council tax scheme to continue

10th Febuary 2011.'Wakefield Town Hall'Picture: MATTHEW PAGE
10th Febuary 2011.'Wakefield Town Hall'Picture: MATTHEW PAGE

Financial help for people who cannot afford to pay their council tax is expected to remain in place next year.

Wakefield Council will decide whether to maintain its Council Tax Support (CTS) scheme at a cabinet meeting on Tuesday.

Council’s too k responsibility for the support after Council Tax Benefit was abolished by the government in 2013.

Since the council’s support scheme was introduced, all working age people have to pay at least 30 per cent of their council tax, or around £275 a year for a band A property.

A report to the cabinet meeting recommends that the scheme remains unchanged in 2016-17.

It said: “There are currently around 30,000 citizens receiving CTS in the Wakefield district. Approximately 16,000 of these are of working age.

“Keeping the rules of the scheme the same in 2016-17 will offer some stability for those citizens in an otherwise difficult financial environment.”

Councils are required to review their CTS schemes every year. Some were finding that their schemes were not financially viable, but Wakefield’s was designed to be sustainable.

The report added: “Under the rules set by government, pensioners receive up to 100 per cent support.

“The current scheme for working age claimants sets the maximum level of support available at 70 per cent.”