Next year's Council Tax and budget proposals have been backed.

A Council Tax increase of 4.99 per cent (five per cent) is proposed as part of Sunderland City Council's budget for 2018/2019.

It would be an increase of 83p a week for the majority of households in Sunderland who are in a Band A property. For a Band D property it is £1.24p a week.

The proposal was outlined at the City Council's Cabinet meeting Wednesday 10 January.

The figure includes a two per cent adult social care precept that has been suggested by the Government. The social care precept is anticipated to raise £1.79m and will be used to help support older and vulnerable people in care homes, and more than 4,000 people who receive care at their own homes.

Cabinet Secretary, Councillor Mel Speding said: "It is very disappointing that there is no additional money from the Government to address the pressures facing councils in relation to adult and children's social care.

"Once again the Government has simply passed the burden from central government to the local council tax payer. And of course, this approach disadvantages councils such as ours, with a low council tax base, as we cannot raise as much through council tax as other more affluent councils.

"Residents have told us about their concerns in relation to street scene and the need to make the city greener and cleaner, and therefore the budget includes proposals for some reinvestment in place based services."

Final decisions on both the budget and Council Tax are at the full council meeting on Wednesday 7 March.

Subject to final decisions at that meeting, this would be the third year the tax has increased in Sunderland since 2010. The tax helps pay for hundreds of services from helping the elderly and vulnerable, to refuse and recycling services. A 4.99 per cent (five per cent) increase was agreed last year.

Last year council tax raised approximately 14 per cent or £90m of the council's planned budget of £633m. The vast majority of council spending is grants from Central Government grants.

Since 2010, the council has seen its spending power reduced by a third under the Government austerity programme with £290m taken out of its budgets.

Budget proposals at the Cabinet meeting included:

* An extra £1.5m, alongside the £500,000 invested last year, for supporting environmental services such as street cleaning, and prosecuting litter bugs and fly-tippers;

* £4m extra in children's social care and an extra £2.7m in adult social care are also being considered;

* A one-off investment of £2m to support this year's Tall Ships Event in July.

At December's Cabinet meeting, proposals for an additional £60m of investment of one-off capital spending such as on highways, plant and equipment, school buildings and other infrastructure, were agreed as budget proposals.

For properties, the proposals are:

Valuation Band

Properties in Base

Current Council Tax

Proposed Annual Increase

Proposed Council Tax

 

Of which Relates to Social Care Precept

       

A

77,820

863.21

43.08

906.29

 

57.74

B

18,002

1,007.08

50.25

1,057.33

 

67.36

C

16,452

1,150.95

57.43

1,208.38

 

76.99

D

8,553

1,294.82

64.61

1,359.43

 

86.61

E

3,155

1,582.56

78.97

1,661.53

 

105.86

F

1,048

1,870.30

93.32

1,963.62

 

125.10

G

624

2,158.03

107.69

2,265.72

 

144.35

H

20

2,589.64

129.22

2,718.86

 

173.22

 

125,674

     

 

 

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