Published: 15 February 2021
Cllr Rachael Robathan, Leader of Westminster City Council, said:
“We know how tough this year has been on everyone and we want to support our local residents in any way we can. We know council tax disproportionately affects those people who are less well off, and even more so this year due to the pandemic, which is why we’ve worked hard to keep council tax as low as we can, while maintaining our frontline services and ensuring that our residents and businesses have the services and support they need.
“Westminster City Council always looks to provide low council tax, while providing excellent local services, which is why we are only planning on increasing the general fund element of council tax by 0.5%, which is in line with inflation. This is despite the severe pressure that council finances have been under due to the effects of Covid-19.
“Our priority is to support the most vulnerable and that is why we are pleased to be able to recommend to Full Council an increase in the amount of money that is ringfenced to be spent on social care, which includes ensuring all care homes have adequate testing and PPE provisions, supporting care home providers to implement government guidance, and providing mental health and wellbeing support for residents and staff.
“Along with social care, we have also provided support for our schools and home learning, given additional support for rough sleepers, providing grants quickly to businesses, providing a generous council tax support scheme, engaged our local community groups through our Community Champions and mobilised 6,000 volunteers for our Westminster Connects initiative.
“Despite these extra costs, we still have one of the lowest band D council taxes in the country.”
Notes to Editors:
- This council tax increase is pending approval. The increase recommendation is being discussed at Cabinet on 15 February and a final decision will be taken on the budget when Full Council meets on 3 March.
- Read the full Cabinet report
- The report proposes a balanced budget for 2021/22, which includes a total council tax rise of 3.5% that consists of a general increase of 0.5% and a Social Care precept rise of the allowed 3%. At Band D this will result in an annual increase of £15.69 or an equivalent weekly amount of 30.2p per week. The total Westminster element of council tax will therefore rise from £448.21 to £463.90 at Band D. This is expected to be one of the lowest in the country.