Cabinet discussed the proposals for the Council Tax Base for 2023/24, which were proposing for increase by 1.74% on the previous financial year. The report also recommended maintaining the existing schemes for Local Council Tax Support and premiums on Long-Term Empty properties for next year.
Subject to the passing of the relevant legislation, there were also recommendations for a 100% premium on second homes from April. Whilst we value the benefit second home owners bring to our local economy, it is important the council can raise appropriate sources of income from our visitors, whilst simultaneously also helping to prioritise housing for our local residents.
Councillor Yates and Councillor Austin spoke under Council Procedure 20.1.
Councillor David Saunders proposed, Councillor Bob Bayford seconded and Cabinet:
1. Approved the District's Council Tax Base for 2023/24 as 45,759.46 and the tax base for the towns and parishes in the Council’s administrative area, as set out in the table at Annex 2;
2. Agreed that council tax discounts remain unchanged for 2023/24;
3. Agreed that the ‘Long Term Empty Premium’ for properties that have been left empty and substantially unfurnished remain unchanged for 2023/24 as follows:
· for periods of 2 years but less than 5 years, a Long Term Empty Premium to be charged at 100%;
· for periods of 5 years but less than 10 years, a Long Term Empty Premium to be charged at 200%; and
· for periods of 10 years or more a Long Term Empty Premium to be charged at 300%.
4. Agreed to revise the Council Tax Reduction Scheme for 2023/24 in line with the recommendations in this report;
5. Approved the application of the 100% council tax premium on properties empty (unoccupied and unfurnished) for periods of 1 year but less than 5 years, applicable from 1 April 2024, subject to the Regeneration & Levelling-Up Bill receiving Royal assent; and
6. Approved the application of a 100% Council Tax premium on properties unoccupied but furnished (often referred to as ‘second homes’), applicable from 1 April 2024, subject to the Regeneration & Levelling-Up Bill receiving Royal Assent.