Posted: Tue 5th Mar 2024

Pembrokeshire Council Tax Rates Set to Soar by Over 16%

news.wales / newyddion.cymru
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Mar 5th, 2024

Council tax rates in Pembrokeshire will rise by more than 16 per cent, adding nearly £220 to the average bill, if a recommendation before councillors is backed next week.
It is recommended the council tax rate in Pembrokeshire increases by 16.3 per cent, a report for full council ahead of its March 7 meeting says.
The county had faced the possibility of even higher increases, of 18.94 per cent, and an eye-watering 20.98 per cent, before Cabinet members backed the 16.3 per cent rate last month, which is now recommended for full council.
The 16.3 per cent rate would see the basic council tax level – before town/community precepts and the police precept are included – rise by £219.02 for the average Band D property, taking it to £1,561.98.
It is expected to be the highest percentage rate in Wales, on top of previous increases of 12.5 per cent, 9.92 per cent, five per cent, 3.75 per cent, five per cent and 7.5 per cent.
Pembrokeshire is currently facing a projected funding gap of £31.9m, partly due to a lower-than-expected Provisional Local Government Settlement.
That figure has increased from £27.1m in December, and £28.4m in January, when it was described as “by far the highest funding gap in our history,” by Cabinet Member for Corporate Finance Cllr Alec Cormack.
The final council tax bill for residents would be higher than this as town and community council precepts and the police precept would be added; with second home-owners and empty property owners facing even higher bills as both have a premium rate.
The premium rate on second homes for the next financial year is 200 per cent, effectively a treble rate, with a more complicated approach on empty properties of 100 per cent after 24 months, 200 per cent after 36 months, and 300 per cent after five years.
Neighbouring Ceredigion backed a council tax increase of 11.1 per cent on February 29.
Pembrokeshire’s proposed increase has been described by campaign group the Taxpayers Alliance as the largest council tax increase in England and Wales in more than a decade, with calls for councillors to “show some backbone, stand up for their residents and say no to this ruinous tax hike”.
Responding to the Taxpayers Alliance comments, Pembrokeshire Cabinet Member for Corporate Finance Cllr Alec Cormack said: “For 2024-25, Pembrokeshire County Council is facing additional demand pressures in statutory services (adult and children’s social care, homelessness and education). This means we need an extra £17m to provide these services next year – this alone is equivalent to an increase of over 26 per cent on council tax. Additionally, we face inflationary pressures of £22.8m.
“Our funding gap, after the AEF money we’ll receive from Welsh Government, is £31.9m.
“We are legally required to balance our budget – to match the amount of money coming in against what we spend to provide services. We are planning to make savings on our spending of £12.2m, as well as utilising some council tax premiums to enhance the sustainability of our communities.
“This has allowed us to limit the council tax rise to 16.31 per cent. This weighs up the need to limit council tax rises on residents against the need to preserve services used by many of the most vulnerable people in the county.
“The demand pressures, particularly in social care, are affecting all councils in Wales, but particularly Pembrokeshire, since we have had the lowest council tax in Wales for decades.
“Based on current information, we expect Pembrokeshire to still have one of the lowest council tax levels – probably 18th out of the 22 Welsh local authorities.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​



Spotted something? Got a story? Email News@News.Wales



More from Pembrokeshire Council

Hopes Dashed for Community Pub at Closed Pembrokeshire Inn

Pembrokeshire Council

Family Given Approval to Stay in Pembrokeshire ‘Love Shack’ Built Without Permission

Pembrokeshire Council

New Official Policy Proposed for Flying Flags and Lighting Up County Hall in Pembrokeshire

Pembrokeshire Council

Online Petition Launched to Save Pembrokeshire Day Centre from Closure

Pembrokeshire Council

Four Days Left Before Vote for Dyfed Powys Police and Crime Commissioner

Pembrokeshire Council

Second Stage of Haverfordwest Transport Interchange Contract ‘Called In’ for Review

Pembrokeshire Council

Latest from News.Wales

Public Consultation Launched for ‘No-Gas’ Housing Development Near Maesteg

Bridgend Council

Opponents of Proposed “Super-Estate” in Wrexham Call for Public Meeting

Wrexham Council

Disused Newport leisure centre deemed safe by council officials

Newport Council

Plans Revealed for Fourth Phase of Rhondda Fach Active Travel Route

Rhondda Council

Fear of Diluted Local Voice in Vale of Glamorgan Community Council Changes

Vale of Glamorgan Council

Smallest School in Rhondda Cynon Taf to Close Despite Strong Opposition

Rhondda Council