Responding to the news that ministers have approved a 6 per cent rise in council tax to fund social care, John O'Connell, Chief Executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said:
"A 6 per cent Council Tax rise will put unimaginable pressure on already struggling families without providing any real solution to the the social care crisis. Since 1997 Council Tax has gone up by at least 58 per cent in real terms in England alone, so councils must remember that raising it even more will have a serious impact on household budgets.
"The government must find money through scrapping wasteful and expensive projects such as HS2 to bridge any funding gap in the short term, while looking to introduce long-term reform in healthcare and the tax system so that councils can more flexibly respond to the priorities and circumstances of local taxpayers."
The TaxPayers' Alliance has produced a briefing note outlining how taxes can be decentralised so that local authorities can raise more money locally. That would allow them to meet the specific challenges in their local areas. The briefing note summarises the recommendations of the 2020 Tax Commission:
- Local authorities should raise half of their spending power from local taxes
- Local authorities can more flexibly respond to local priorities and circumstances
- Councils should have new tax raising powers