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Barrow Borough Council agrees its budget and council tax

Ann Thomson

Councillors have agreed this year’s budget and council tax for residents.

Both were passed at a meeting of Barrow Borough Council’s full council yesterday.

Barrow Borough Council is the council tax collection authority for the area. This means it retains a small amount of the overall council tax paid – just 12 pence in every pound – to fund essential services over the coming 12 months.

The remainder is passed on to other public authorities; Cumbria County Council and Cumbria Fire and Rescue, Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner and, where appropriate, town and parish councils.

This year, Barrow Borough Council’s full council has approved a council tax increase on its share of 2.08 per cent.

With 59 per cent of properties across the borough in Band A, this amounts to a weekly increase of six pence per week per household – or £3.34 for the year.

This is ten pence per week per household – £5 over the course of a year – for a Band D property.

Furthermore, as part of the response to COVID-19, the council announced the continuation of the local Council Tax Support Grant to provide assistance to economically vulnerable people in the area.

Since March 2020, more than four thousand people have been helped by the scheme.

Ann Thomson, Barrow Borough Council leader, said: “The amount of central funding we receive from the Government has been declining year after year, even though we know there is a greater demand for services and residents need our support more than ever.

“We have a council here that really cares. We care about businesses, we care about residents and we want to put them first.

“With the pandemic still taking its toll we’ve got a tough year ahead of us but we will make our borough brighter because we’ve got the will, the commitment and the passion to deliver this for everyone in our communities.

“It’s important to remember that though the borough council collects council tax on behalf of all public authorities in the area, it retains a small proportion of the total sum.

“Residents remain at the heart of everything we do as a council and I would again like to thank everyone for looking out for each other during one of the most difficult periods we have ever experienced.”

Those not in receipt of full council tax support who have suffered significant financial hardship as a result of the coronavirus pandemic can complete a COVID-19 council tax hardship application and return it to [email protected]

A copy of the application form can be found on here: www.barrowbc.gov.uk/residents/council-tax/council-tax-advice/