Saturday, June 23, 2007

Council tax 'doubled' in ten years

Council tax has risen by almost three times the rate of inflation over the past decade.
Research from Halifax found that the average household council tax bill has almost doubled over the course of 10 years and is currently 91% higher than when Tony Blair came to power.
Over the same period average earnings have increased by 51%, while retail price inflation has risen by just 31%.
The typical UK household now has to stump up £1,078 to pay the annual charge to their billing authority, compared to £564 in the 1997/98 financial year.
Residents of Monmouthshire have seen the biggest percentage increase during the decade, with council tax hikes amounting to 184%. It is followed by Powys and Westminster, where council tax per household rose by 150% and 149% respectively over the period.
More than half of all districts have experienced at least a doubling in council tax bills since 1997, figures show.
Richmond-upon-Thames has the dubious honour of topping the list of districts with the highest average council tax. The typical household in the leafy London borough will have to pay £1,665 this year, compared to £807 a decade ago.
In contrast, residents in Wandsworth face an average bill of £641 in the 2007/08 financial year, up from £388 in 1997/98.
The South East is revealed as the most expensive region in terms of council tax per household, with Wales being the cheapest.
Researchers looked at the average council tax in all 408 of the billing authorities in Great Britain as part of the study.

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