POWYS OPPOSITION GROUPS TO OPPOSE 3.9% COUNCIL TAX RISE


Leaders of the main opposition groups on Powys County Council have signalled that they will be opposing the council’s Independent/Conservative Cabinet’s proposed Budget and Council Tax increase for 2022/23. Cllrs James Gibson-Watt (Welsh Lib Dem), Matthew Dorrance (Welsh Labour), Jeremy Pugh (Action for Powys) and Elwyn Vaughan (Plaid Cymru) issued a joint statement:-

“The Independent/Conservative Cabinet’s proposed 2022/23 Budget is more of the same. Hiking taxes and cutting services, including further cuts to arts and cultural organisations that threaten the future of the whole sector. We think Powys deserves better. It is also full of risk and savings proposals that lack credibility. There has been a serious lack of control of some departmental budgets over the past 5 years, which has led the Cabinet to impose Council Tax increases amounting to 30% since 2017. The latest 3.9% increase comes despite the fact that the Council will receive a record 9.6% increase in its grant from Welsh Government in 2022/23. It also comes at a time of huge increases in the costs of living and a 10% National Insurance tax increase. It will be unaffordable for a lot hard-pressed families in Powys.”

“The inherent risks in the draft Budget, the absence of any credible plan from the Cabinet to bring departmental budgets under proper control and the fact that further significant extra funding is likely to reach the Council between now and the end of March means it is impossible to propose an alternative Budget this year. We will be inviting the Council to vote down the Cabinet’s proposed 2022/23 Budget in the first instance, to persuade the Cabinet to think again and present a revised Budget to Council that contains less risk, more credibility and, above all, a lower Council Tax increase.”

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Contact: Cllr James Gibson-Watt on 07971048737


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