Council Tax and Benefits are Changing

August 31, 2012 9:15 am

Council Tax Benefits Trafford Council Altrincham

If you have been following Trafford Citizens Advice Bureau on Twitter you will see there is a lot of discussions on Council Tax and Benefits that will affect people in Altrincham and Trafford.

Proposed plans will come into affect in April 2013, where the Government is proposing to abolish the current national Council Tax Benefit scheme, this will give the local authorities more freedom to set up tax and benefit schemes that will only affect the local areas, in our case Altrincham and Trafford. These local schemes are being rebranded as Council Tax Support.

Trafford Council to have more control over Benefits and Taxes in Altrincham and Trafford

Some people see this as a good scheme as it means local councils can choose how to allocate benefits, however this scheme is being introduced with new cuts that mean although councils will have more autonomy they will not have as much money to pay for these schemes. It has been estimated that Trafford Council will see a £1.4 million cut in funding for the tax year 2013/2014. This is a huge shortfall that means Trafford Council will have some hard decisions to make about who will be eligible for Council Tax support and how much they will receive.

There are a lot of proposals around including removing the Empty Property Exemption for unfurnished properties, this would be replaced with a 25% discount or remove the current 10% discount for second homes, reducing the discount for second homes to 0%, of course there are a lot of proposals and ideas to be considered and nothing is set in stone yet. However, what is clear as these cuts could potentially affect everyone (except pensioners)  whether you are on benefits or not, this cold have a knock on effect to everyone.

Altrincham and Trafford Residents – have your say…

It is important that you get your say and find out more on this new scheme, to have your say, why not complete Trafford Council’s online questionnaire you can also look at Trafford Council’s proposals in full and see what the proposed options are that may affect you.

If you are concerned and want to find out more then you can always contact the helpful people at Trafford Citizens Advice Bureau or follow them on Twitter.

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