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West Somerset Council

Benefit Consultation

Consultation on changes to the Council Tax Rebate scheme for 2018/19

The Government abolished Council Tax Benefit on 1 April 2013 and West Somerset Council replaced it with a local Council Tax Rebate scheme that took into account the reduction in Government funding. The scheme helps people on a low income by reducing the amount of Council Tax they have to pay

While Council Tax Rebate is a local scheme, we are not allowed complete freedom on the rules we must apply.  The Government state we must fully protect pensioners under the same rules that applied to Council Tax Benefit. This means we have no discretion in the help we give people over pension age, as there are nationally set rules for this group.

With further reductions in Government funding expected over the coming years, we are proposing to make some changes to Council Tax Rebate for working age people from 1 April 2018. 

If we change our scheme, it could affect everyone living in West Somerset, not just those getting Council Tax Rebate. If we do not make changes, it could mean everyone would need to pay more in Council Tax, or it could affect the services residents get for their Council Tax.

Councillors considered a number of options for how we could change Council Tax Rebate for people of working age in a report on 16 May 2017.

We need to ask for people’s views before making any final decisions on changing our Council Tax Rebate scheme for working age people from 1 April 2018.

Please read the consultation booklet before completing the online questionnaire.

The consultation period ends on 27 August 2017.