Council Tax Freeze for Reading Residents

News Article

14/03/2011

Reading residents will feel the benefit of the Council’s decision to freeze council tax charges when bills begin landing on their doormats this week.

More than 66,000 properties across the town will receive their Council Tax bills from tomorrow (March 15) onwards however this year they will not have to find any extra money to pay them.

Despite the challenging economic climate, Reading Borough Council has been able to hold charges at 2010/11 levels whilst continuing to deliver high-quality services and value for money.

The Council Tax freeze for 2011/12 has been made possible after around £19 million of savings were identified by Reading Borough Council in next year’s budget. These include efficiency measures of £7.3m. The process of identifying further efficiency savings will continue over coming years.

Council Tax levels for 2011/12 – which include precepts from Thames Valley Police and the Royal Berkshire Fire & Rescue Service – are as follows:

BAND A: £999.18
BAND B: £1,165.70
BAND C: £1,332.24
BAND D: £1,498.76
BAND E: £1,831.82
BAND F: £2,164.88
BAND G: £2,497.94
BAND H: £2,997.52

More than 40% of properties in Reading fall in Band C which means more than 2 in five households will have a Council Tax bill based on a charge of £1,332.24 for 2011/12. Households who receive Council Tax benefit and/or a single person discount will pay less than the basic charge per band shown above.

As always, Reading residents who have not already doen so are being urged to set up a direct debit to pay their Council Tax bill for 2011/12. This process of payment saves the Council and the council tax payer money by cutting down on significant administration costs. For example it costs around 20 pence per year to pay your Council Tax by direct debit as opposed to around £20 for all other payment methods, including cash and cheques.

More details about how to set up a Direct Debit to pay your Council Tax bill can be found at http://www.reading.gov.uk/adviceandbenefits/counciltax/payyourbill
or residents can telephone 0118 9373727 to request a DD form.

For 2009/10 97% of Council tax bills were paid and a similar level of payment is expected for 2010/11. Reading Borough Council would like to thank all residents who paid on time.

The Council would urge anyone who has difficulty paying their Council Tax to contact the Council as quickly as possible so suitable arrangements can be made. Residents who refuse to pay and do not contact the Council Tax team need to know the Council will vigourously pursue non-payment of council tax through the courts.