Conservative-led Staffordshire County Council plans to raise Council Tax by 4.95% this year to pay for the funding gap for social care. That’s an increase on an average Band D property of £53.89 meaning Burntwood residents have seen their Council Tax increase by £115.29 since the last election.
This does not include Council Tax for the Fire, Police, Town and district councils!
Burntwood North’s Councillor Susan Woodward who is also Leader of the Opposition Labour Group said:
“We all know the enormous pressures on social care but increasing Council Tax to this level isn’t the answer. The Conservatives would need to raise Council Tax by 15% (just as is being proposed via a referendum in Tory-controlled Surrey County Council) to get anywhere near filling the gaping hole. My concern is that this hike in Council Tax hits those on limited incomes far harder and takes no account whatsoever of the ability to pay.
‘’The blame must also lie with the Conservative Government which refuses to admit we have a crisis in social care. Across the country, the gap in social care funding will be £2.6 billion by 2019 with £1.3 billion required immediately to shore up the system. This is causing a huge knock on effect on the NHS. Every day we are seeing the impact on A&Es and on the blocking of hospital beds by those who need support before being discharged.
‘’There is consensus across councils of all political colours in England asking the Government to act swiftly but, so far, they’ve just buried their head in the sand. Blame must lie too with the Conservative leadership at Staffordshire County Council as they’ve been unwilling to press their Government on the financial pressures they face and have not made changes to the way social services are delivered soon enough’’ said Cllr Woodward.30.01.2017