More councillors not paying council tax

September 21, 2011 5:40 PM

More councillors in the South-West have been uncovered as not paying their council tax on time. Six of West Somerset’s 28 district councillors had to be sent one or more reminders after failing to pay their council tax on time last year. Their arrears mounted to £1,947.70.

If anyone is struggling to pay their council tax, says West Somerset’s own glossy brochure, ‘There is help available and many flexible ways in which you can pay your bill. Contact the council to discuss a payment plan.'

Very convenient I would have thought for the councillors involved and much better than getting the council to spend taxpayers’ money on sending out letters chasing up late payments.

West Somerset’s council leader was unavailable for comment, but the Corporate Director stepped in. ‘Many people are sent reminders and, like anyone else,’ he said, ‘councillors may miss payments through an oversight, being away or a change in circumstances.’

The problem is that councillors are not like anyone else when it comes to council matters. They have been elected specifically to ensure the machinery of local government is run efficiently and effectively—and that includes paying their own council tax on time.

I shall be enquiring with a Freedom of Information request to see whether this contagion has spread to Bath & North-East Somerset council.More councillors in the South-West have been uncovered as not paying their council tax on time. Six of West Somerset’s 28 district councillors had to be sent one or more reminders after failing to pay their council tax on time last year. Their arrears mounted to £1,947.70.

If anyone is struggling to pay their council tax, says West Somerset’s own glossy brochure, ‘There is help available and many flexible ways in which you can pay your bill. Contact the council to discuss a payment plan.'

Very convenient I would have thought for the councillors involved and much better than getting the council to spend taxpayers’ money on sending out letters chasing up late payments.

West Somerset’s council leader was unavailable for comment, but the Corporate Director stepped in. ‘Many people are sent reminders and, like anyone else,’ he said, ‘councillors may miss payments through an oversight, being away or a change in circumstances.’

The problem is that councillors are not like anyone else when it comes to council matters. They have been elected specifically to ensure the machinery of local government is run efficiently and effectively—and that includes paying their own council tax on time.

I shall be enquiring with a Freedom of Information request to see whether this contagion has spread to Bath & North-East Somerset council.

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