Somerset County Council tax precept to be frozen amidst job cuts

Yeovil Express: Somerset County Council tax precept to be frozen amidst job cuts Somerset County Council tax precept to be frozen amidst job cuts

FAMILIES facing tough budget decisions will be relieved to hear they are unlikely to have to pay more council tax for county council services from April - but up to 100 jobs are going at the authority.

Somerset County Council is proposing freezing its part of the levy, which forms by far the largest part of council tax bills, for a fifth year.

It means the average Band D home will pay £1,027 next year – the same as in 2009 – for services such as education and social services.

County council leader Cllr John Osman said: “Our income from government is down, but we face increasing calls on our services from people who need our help.”

Up to 100 jobs are set to go at the council as part of cost-cutting measures to balance the budget.

The authority announced proposals to save £18million, which would see youth and community services reduced by £936,000 and sheltered housing provision slashed by £500,000.

The council is also planning a shake-up of children's centres, as well as bringing in self service systems in libraries in the hope of saving a combined £2million.

Mr Osman added: “We have to make tough choices, but we are the same as any careful household. We have a reduced income, increased bills, something has to give.”

In the budget, £40million is identified for spending on social services, and £160m will be spent looking after vulnerable adults.

Councillors will vote on the budget proposals on February 19.

  • South Somerset District Council, which runs planning, waste collection and environmental health services, and the police and fire service has not yet announced whether it will increase its demands over the same period.

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