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London's council tax rise is only a third of national average increase

PUBLISHED: 13:29 03 March 2009 | UPDATED: 14:08 05 October 2010

AVERAGE council tax rises in London are likely to be 1.2 per cent this year—well under half the national figure. A third of all town halls are freezing council tax rises altogether for the coming financial year, according to a survey by London Councils. This includes the freeze in the GLA's precept.

AVERAGE council tax rises in London are likely to be 1.2 per cent this year—well under half the national figure.

A third of all town halls are freezing council tax altogether for the coming financial year, according to a survey by London Councils which represents local authorities.

This includes the freeze in the Greater London Authority’s precept.

But without the GLA’s share, the London average is up by 1.6 per cent, just over half the national average, according to the survey.

TAX RISE FOR 1-IN-3

Only one-in-three local authorities is increasing its tax, including Tower Hamlets in East London which is expected to raise it by 1.6 per cent from April 1 when it meets for a special session tomorrow night (Wednesday).

Neighbouring Hackney is one of the two-out-of-three town halls freezing their tax. It is cutting its red tape bureaucracy to save £8m, to plough back into public services.

Southwark is relocating services to a single location to save £35m over three years. Lambeth is saving £10m, partly by cutting its agency staff wage bill by three-quarters.

Two authorities are actually cutting council tax—Hammersmith & Fulham by three per cent after cutting £13m in red tape, and Kensington & Chelsea which is paying out a £50 efficiency’ dividend.

Total savings across London are £376m, exceeding the target set by Whitehall by £100m.

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