An Independent Wealden councillor has said there is ‘no need’ for Wealden District Council to increase its Council Tax this year.
Cllr Stephen Shing, leader of Wealden’s Independent opposition group, said: “Residents already face an increase from other authorities such as their town and parish councils, and the county council.
“The town and parish council’s small increases are minimal and could be considered as acceptable as all the tax raised is used locally in the town and parish.
“On the other hand, Wealden District Council is in a very good financial situation. This year, they have a strong surplus in reserves, and this is quite sufficient to cover the increase they’re proposing. However, the ruling Conservatives have decided to increase the Council Tax by 1.9 per cent.
“This is totally unnecessary. Most low-income families are already finding it hard to pay bills. Wealden District Council has always had a large amount in their council reserves - for rainy days. As such, it is extremely harsh to heap pressure on local residents, especially those already facing financial difficulty.
“Having been a Councillor for 19 years I can see that, nationally, councils are in the worst financial situation they’ve ever faced, yet Wealden is able to maintain a healthy surplus in their reserves. Residents should lobby their local councillors and ask them to vote ‘No’ to this unnecessary increase at Council on February 24.”
Cllr Daniel Shing added: “Wealden District Council’s proposed council tax increase is not justified.”
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