Council Tax Support Scheme 2022/23
Report of the Cabinet Member Finance
Despite the reduction in funding this council continued to provide the same level of support to working age residents that was available under the former council tax benefit scheme. By 2018/19 CBC was one of only 36 councils that hadn’t made changes to their scheme to reduce the cost.
In 2019/20 a new scheme was approved. that the most vulnerable and .
In the first year of the scheme the overall costs reduced and the most vulnerable and Covid the caseload for working age people increased significantly in 2020/21 and was up by 25% in April 2021. Due to the impact of The Cabinet outlined the following :
1st March 2020
3,984 recipients cost £3.3million
1st April 2021
4,988 recipients cost £4.7million
31 October 2021
4,839 recipients cost £4.5million (Later point than figures in the report)
The Cabinet Member explained that although the number of working age residents receiving council tax support was now reducing it was anticipated that it will continue to reduce slowly. The caseload in 2022/23 is expected to remain higher than at pre-pandemic levels. Many people are still recovering financially from the effects of the pandemic and the scheme will provide the vital help they need during 2022/23.
He wished to put on record his thanks to all the officers in the revenue and benefits teams for what has been an extraordinary amount of work during the last 12 months supporting residents in the town.
The following responses were given to Member questions :
- The total amount of council tax support was not currently fluctuating to any great degree despite changes as claimants moved back into work for example
- The council has discretion on what council tax support is provided
- The Cabinet Member Finance undertook to respond at a later date on the financial impact on the council of the universal credit uplift due to the detail required to work out the margin.
In the debate that followed a Member welcomed the fact that the council provided this discretionary support, expressing disappointing that this was not funded nationally to ensure people were treated equally. There was significant poverty in working-age families not just in Cheltenham but nationwide and this should be considered from a communities point of view, rather than just financially.
RESOLVED (unanimously) that
1) the council tax support scheme for 2022/23 for working age customers in Appendix 2 and summarised in Appendix 3 be approved.
2) authority be delegated to the Executive Director for Finance and Assets in consultation with the Cabinet Member Finance and Assets to uprate income levels in line with any increase in Welfare Benefits by 21 February 2022, if required
- 2021_12_06_COU_Council Tax Support Scheme, item 9. PDF 261 KB
- 2021_12_06_COU_Council Tax Support Scheme_Appendix_2, item 9. PDF 854 KB
- 2021_12_06_COU_Council Tax Support Scheme_Appendix_3, item 9. PDF 329 KB
- 2021_12_06_COU_Council Tax Support Scheme_Appendix_4, item 9. PDF 430 KB
- 2021_12_06_COU_Council Tax Support Scheme_Appendix_5, item 9. PDF 358 KB