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Thurrock Council to increase council tax by almost three per cent

The increase will come into force for the next financial year which starts in May 2022. 

Thurrock Council is planning to increase council tax by nearly three percent. 

The council’s proposals will see a 1.99 per cent increase in council tax as well as a one per cent increase in the adult social care precept.

All of the money raised by the increase will go towards social care for both adults and children. 

Thurrock Council said the measures will help it deliver a balanced budget for the financial year between May 2022 to April 2023. 

A balanced budget is when total expected revenues are equal to total planned spending.

The council estimate the increase will be the equivalent to the cost of a two pint bottle of milk each week for a Band D property.

Cabinet member for finance, Shane Hebb, said: “It is important that extra money is provided for key services which deal with the well-being of the borough’s most vulnerable children and adults.

“The Local Government Association commented in December 2021 that all councils would need to increase tax. Thurrock is no different. Where inflation is presently, this means that this is an under-inflationary increase.

“The Cabinet have always said that tax will never be a single default approach. By reshaping services to better target outcomes for residents, managing recruitment and looking at how we can deliver services differently while ensuring minimal impacts on residents and focusing on only the most important capital projects, we have closed the budget gap we were facing next year.

“The investment approach, that elected members unilaterally approved in 2017, enabled reserves increases by over 300% since 2016 levels and has continued to produce income for the council, now 22 months after COVID-19 became a feature of all our lives. Councils across the country are in ‘rainy day’ scenarios, and Thurrock can use some of the reserves that were built-up for one-off pressures for such a scenario. Reserves levels will remain in excess of 2016 levels.

Cllr Barry Johnson, cabinet member for education and children’s social care, added: “The pandemic has created real challenges and increased demand in children’s social care nationally, not just in Thurrock. By ring-fencing proposed Council Tax increases we can ensure that we are doing all we can to protect some of the most vulnerable residents in the borough.”

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