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TENS OF THOUSANDS OF SALFORD PEOPLE TO PAY MORE COUNCIL TAX
 

Star date: 13th September 2012

SALFORD COUNCIL `CONSULTS' ON COUNCIL TAX BENEFIT CUTS

"the funding cuts will have a substantial impact on working age claimants" Salford Council

As revealed by the Salford Star in August, over 20,000 people in Salford will have to pay more Council Tax, due to ConDem Government cuts and Salford Council's determination to impose them, while other authorities are not.

Yesterday the Council launched its consultation on the cuts, which could see low paid families forking out around £50 a month more for Council Tax. The consultation, which the Star believes is slanted, goes on until December. Turkeys voting for Christmas???

Full story here…


Salford Council Cuts to Council Tax Benefits
click image to enlarge

`SLANTED SALFORD COUNCIL SURVEY COULD HAVE BEEN WRITTEN BY A FROTHING DAILY MAIL HACK…'

See previous Salford Star article Salford Council Tax Benefit Cuts – click here.

The only people who are let off the latest ConDem Government attack on the low paid and unemployed are pensioners. Everyone else is going to be hit by Council Tax rises, which could see some families paying around £50 more per month on their bills.

The Government has imposed the cut, which becomes active in April next year, and handed it over to local councils to sort out the mess. Some councils are not imposing any cuts in Council Tax benefits. Salford Council, via Mayor Ian Stewart, has chosen to `consult' on the changes which he intends to implement.

The Mayor's original report on the cuts stated in no uncertain terms that "the funding cuts will have a substantial impact on working age claimants". Here's how…

1. `Support will be limited to between 85% and 90% of the amount a band A property' 

Band A properties have a value of `up to £40,000'*. Anyone who's in a Band A property only gets 85-90% support. And anyone in a property in Band B or above is financially knackered.

The Council has kindly provided some cases studies to help people understand the household budget destruction - and for this cut it gives the example of Mr and Mrs S who have two kids and receive income support. At the moment they pay nothing but under the new proposals, because they live in a band D property (worth £68-£88,000), they would be stuffed with a bill of between £863 and £914 per year.

The Council's consultation `survey', we believe, is well slanted, like it could have been written by a frothing Daily Mail hack…

`Do you agree that everyone of working age should pay something towards their council tax?'… `Do you agree and think it's fair that people should pay a minimum contribution of 10 to 15% towards their council tax bill?'`Do you agree that people who qualify for council tax support and live in higher banded homes should pay more towards their council tax bill?'

What it doesn't say is that most people now live in homes with a value above Band A, £40,000. And what it doesn't ask is `Do you think it's right that families on low incomes should be getting almost an extra £1000 Council Tax bill to pay on top of everything else?'

2. `We would remove the second adult rebate for all people of a working age'

The Council gives the example of Mr W, who doesn't currently get any support for his own bill but his son gets income support, so he gets a second adult rebate of £4.87 a week. Under new proposals his bill would mushroom by an extra £253 a year.

3. `Benefits will not be paid where the weekly support is less than £1.00.'

An extra £52 bill per year for people already struggling under `austerity'.

Salford Council has another proposal too. Its consultation states there will be "a new fund to support people who experience extreme hardship. We intend to set out new rules for who might qualify and how they could apply for help with their council tax."

This is very nice, but the consultation doesn't set out what the "new rules" actually are. How can Salford people comment on the `discretionary fund' when they don't know how you would qualify for it?

As the Salford Star pointed out in the previous article (click here), central government is giving Salford Council a payment to cover Council Tax benefits, with a 10% cut. But the government payment isn't ring fenced to support people who can't afford to pay Council Tax.

In theory Salford Council could make it really difficult for its lowest paid and poorest citizens to claim benefits – and put the money towards fountains, Salford Reds, Media City or whatever else it fancied. We're sure the Mayor wouldn't do this but the temptation would definitely be there…

The Council has calculated that the Council Tax benefit cut is essential because there would be a shortfall of around £3million – and argues that if it didn't cut Council Tax benefits other services would have to be cut.

The Salford Star rejects this argument. Salford Council is paying out £3million a year to the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra. Salford Council has a MediaCityUK slush fund of around £2million a year for the next five years. Salford Council has recently stumped up £3million for a car park near Granada Studios. Salford Council has this week approved a grant of £4million plus loans of £11million to Peel Holdings, one of the richest companies in the country. And Salford Council will shortly be having a grand opening of its new £13million fountain and sculpture space in Greengate.

The Council might argue that it has contracts in place with these prestige schemes that can't be broken. But what about the social contract with its own population, who are getting absolutely hammered by the ConDem cuts – and the ruling Labour Party's compliance with those cuts?

We urge everyone to take part in the consultation and tell Salford Council where to stuff its Tory cuts.

Full details of Council Tax cuts and the online consultation – click here

* We've been informed that Band A value of £40,000 dates back to 1991 and still stands.

Winston Smith wrote
at 16:26:24 on 18 September 2012
Michael - political parties are just plain evil, they're nothing more than cliques organised to give a self serving minority undue power over a majority
 
Michael Felse wrote
at 13:29:11 on 18 September 2012
Pimpernelle, we know there are two sides to every story. As a born coal Labour family guy, my loyal years experience as Labour constituency secretary (all be it in Doncaster) saw rules expel me in 2009 for at least five years. My crime was me taking an independent stand against extreme road dangers when I witnessed a young child narrowly escape her death due to street dangerous drivers. But the fact is I know elected Councillors in England give all their private lives to serve the community. This is true in Salford but I do beg our Elected Mayor to bring about an all party forum into Salford, letting all the people representatives debate major important matters. As an individual voice about to leave the English Democrats, owing to Liverpool candidate's attack on the gay flag use, I go back to being an independent voice which excludes me from any such mixed party forum. Like all other individual good voices on this comments site I will never let Party Politics come before my right to see life saving justice done or even my right to oppose what I do believe can be seen as a core attack on a minority group. Democratic parties are just too ridged and I think this is why our Mayor does not embrace the breath of all parties in open forum. Salford needs us to continue our challenges, well done all.
 
A.P. wrote
at 13:28:32 on 18 September 2012
Quite right, S.P. The apathy of the electorate is shocking. We should have booted these 'nu-liebour' Tory Scum out of office years ago .
 
salford pimpernelle wrote
at 06:10:18 on 18 September 2012
Salford people deserve these shister's, because Salford people don't give a dam about themselves or Salford. born labour, live labour, die labour and don't question it. just keep voting labour. For these wankers to prevail it takes good people to look the other way and do nothing.
 
life is loud wrote
at 12:13:54 on 17 September 2012
Yes I think its right that people who have never paid any council tax should pay something its hitting the workers again
 
Andy Mendonca wrote
at 10:30:26 on 17 September 2012
As Mary says , we were all under the impression that Spicer would be booted , once an elected mayor took responsibility for this betrayed and dead city. We have been misled and conned by this tory -traitor council of pocket- stuffers and empty -promise spewers . I will refuse to pay any more council tax . It's already far too high in this rotton city. I will see them all in Hell . Spicer and Stewart , must go .
 
Brianfkirkham wrote
at 14:58:25 on 16 September 2012
I'm partly in agreement with what you say, Ms. Ferrer, but until either a credible alternative party comes to the fore or the Lib dems see sense - this area will be labour controlled. Of course, that's not to say they cannot spread their alternative message. I've no doubt i'll see them back in the council hall some time in the very near future (possibly when peel step on too many locals toes or a Labour Member forgets his electorate). As for the Chief Exec - wasn't the idea of an Executive Mayor like Turkey's preparing the Christmas dinner?
 
mary ferrer wrote
at 20:52:47 on 15 September 2012
Mr Kirkham For a start I don't need a history lesson,second just in case you haven't noticed there are no Lib Dem Councillors in Salford and to be truthful I am not surprised.I don't agree what has happened with the Con/Dems that is why I have sent my membership back. For the life of me I can't understand why the residents of Salford vote Labour in year after year. I Did vote for an elected Mayor and hoped we would get an independent person,but that wasn't to be. I also was under the impression we would be getting rid of Ms Spicer,that also didn't happen. The country is in a mess because of years of being run by Labour,this city is in a mess because of years of being run by Labour.Don't know where we go from here,its down to the voters of Salford to take note of what is happening within our city and do something about it in May 2014.But I won't be holding my breath.
 
j m wrote
at 20:52:42 on 15 September 2012
Won't pay
 
Carol Laidlaw wrote
at 20:51:59 on 15 September 2012
Small correction: if you look at the consultation section on the website again, Mr and Mrs S would have to pay £607.36 to £658.32 per year. £863-£914 is the amount of the rebate they would get. However, they would be expected to pay £11.68-£12.66 per week out of a total weekly income of £348.98 for themselves and their two children. That consists of £111.45 jobseekers allowance (couples have not been able to claim income support for the past three years), £62.09 child tax credit for each child, and £33.70 child benefit. Their housing costs may be covered in full by housing benefit if they are council or housing association tenants, but they will almost certainly have a shortfall to make up if they are private tenants. Anybody who thinks this amount of benefits is 'generous', I challenge them to raise two kids on it - with no savings, no investments and no rich relatives to bail them out when they can't pay a bill.
 
EDMUND JAYE wrote
at 20:09:53 on 14 September 2012
WE MUST HAVE MASS REFUSAL TO PAY.
 
Insider wrote
at 11:52:44 on 14 September 2012
f the coucnil I work for (20 years)had been more frugal we could have withstood a cut. Over paid Scary Spicer, a Mayor who nobody has seen and has yet to do something decisive, a Deputy Mayor who has his own agenda and an oligarch of Assistants who talk and don't deliver. Pay and expenses in this council have spiralled under labour for years. Then factor in the consultants Scouse Marsh who is currently trousing a bung from Agma , Chuckle Brother ex Ass Chief Kevvo Brady who is in Agma yet still on Salford Payroll then we see our 'Nero' like Mayor playing his lute in isolation whilst Salford gores down the tubes!
 
Brian F Kirkham wrote
at 11:51:58 on 14 September 2012
In relation to Directly Elected Mayors thing, I have to ask - Ms. Ferrer - Where have you been? Just to Remind you - This was a Conservative Idea!I mean no disrespect but I followed this for a while now...It began with Mr G.Berg and his petition after a dispute over his property (Look back in either MEN or the Advertiser - The articles are there!). He joined forces with the Community Action Party and forced the city into holding a referendum on an Elected Mayor, after the Government opened the Barn Door (With Mayor Boris in London).Most of you voted, and voted for change - Mr Merry was deposed (to cheers from ConDem Councillors) and and election for the new mayor / cabinet took place. Now, If the people were against the council in principle...Why did they Vote for the same executive and a Labour Mayor? If Lib dems on the council have a problem they ought to pull their finger out and provide some positive solutions for our city. Then again they've joined with the Tories in Central Government - so i'd suggest looking long and hard at yourselves and provide some positives to council before whining.
 
mary Ferrer wrote
at 22:26:16 on 13 September 2012
Maybe we would have a little bit more in the pot if this Labour run council had been a little better with their housekeeping. They have for years been very quick at spending our money on airy fairy ideas. Back in 2000 we were in a mess £13m in the red, they closed, they sold but did they curb their spending did they hell. They have committed money we don't have on projects that the majority of Salford people will not benefit from. Still can't get my head around the need for a Mayor at £60.000 and Ms Spicer at £130.000 plus. We then have all the little Mayors and their deputy little Mayors (not sure if we still have them, used to be support members) Has anyone seen the list of over £500 spends lately,last I saw was back in November?
 
Edmund D. L .C wrote
at 22:24:48 on 13 September 2012
I am for a mass refusal to pay . We've been ripped off by these leeching parasites for far too long.
 
Michael Felse wrote
at 16:51:39 on 13 September 2012
Salford Star gives good suggestions of why Salford Councils must hang its head in shame if it cuts the support from the most needy in our community. Is the funding of the Orchestra, Building of a Fountain or Taking us to Mars really jobs for our local council. Get real, oppose these Tory rules and say NO to cuts in help for the needy, even if it means stopping the nice cheery on the top Salford Council projects.
 
Anti- Politician wrote
at 13:05:39 on 13 September 2012
Quite right , Nacht. They are thatcherite tory turds.
 
SalfordStar wrote
at 12:45:34 on 13 September 2012
See Lynn C's comment below... it's now been added that Band A values date back to 1991! Thanks for that.
 
Lynn C wrote
at 12:40:22 on 13 September 2012
Much as I abhor the current round of cuts and Salford Council's craven attitude, I think you're in danger of creating a misleading impression about council tax banding. Band A properties are those which were worth less than £40,000 based on their value on 1 April 1991, not what the property is worth today (taken from information on council tax published on the direct.gov website). As campaigning journalists I hope you correct this misleading impression, as I would not want your hard work to be brought down by an accusation of sloppy research.
 
Nachtschlepper wrote
at 11:37:04 on 13 September 2012
The answer is pretty simple, every household in Salford should refuse to pay Council Tax. I do wish that some people would refrain from referring to the crazy gang as socialists of any description, they are Tories. Were they socialists they would not be persecuting the poor as they are. I notice no words of wisdom here from anybody at the fun house.
 
Anti- Politician. wrote
at 10:40:04 on 13 September 2012
Time for a fightback against Mayor Greedy Stewart and his army of champagne socialist wasters . We smashed thatchers poll tax . We'll smash this . I'm for storming the Clown Hall , dragging these Filth outside , and a mass lynching .
 
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