Agenda and minutes
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Items No. Item
Declaration of Interests
The Managing Director declared no interests.
- Hastings BC - Council Tax Discretionary Hardship (Covid) Policy - Policy draft 3 feb 2021 , item 329. PDF 593 KB
The Assistant Director, Financial Services and Revenues, submitted a report to agree a Policy for the distribution of the discretionary elements of the government funding (£1,281,991) in respect of the of the Council Tax Hardship Scheme in relation to Covid-19.
The government announced in their budget in March 2020 that they would be making additional money available to local authorities (£500m) to support economically vulnerable people and households. All billing authorities were directed to reduce automatically the Council tax bills for every working age person already receiving Council Tax reduction support by £150 for 2020/21 or reduced to zero if the balance payable for the year was lower than the £150.
From the £500m, the Council received £1,281,991 – based upon the share of national working age caseload. The expectation from government is that the majority of this hardship funding will be used to provide Council Tax relief in conjunction with existing Council Tax reduction schemes.
Under the emergency powers set out in Part 4 of the Council’s Constitution the Managing Director made the decision in consultation with the following Councillors: Cllr Forward, Cllr Barnett, Cllr Batsford Cllr Chowney, Cllr O’Callaghan, Cllr Rogers and Cllr Patmore.
1. The Council’s Managing Director in consultation with the Leader of the Council, the Deputy Leader, the lead member for Financial Management and Estates and other appropriate Councillors (as required by the emergency powers) approve the Hastings Discretionary Council Tax Hardship (Covid-19) Policy on behalf of the Council under said Emergency Powers.
2. The Chief Finance Officer is authorised to make technical amendments and adjustments to the scheme in consultation with the lead member for Financial Management and Estates to ensure available funding is distributed by the end of the current financial year should the end date of the scheme not be extended.
- The Council is seeking to expand its Council Tax Hardship (Covid-19) scheme as a matter of urgency to help more residents in the Borough who are struggling to pay their Council Tax .This is possible as there is expected to be a surplus of grant funding available by the 31 March 2021 which may otherwise need to be returned to central government.