Lewisham Council to increase council tax by 5%

Lewisham Council Houses. Pic: Robin Stott

Residents of Lewisham will see their council tax increase for the fourth year running as the council seeks to fill budget gaps.

An increase of 4.99 per cent has been introduced after Mayor Damien Egan and the cabinet agreed on the budget for 2019/20, according to the News Shopper.

This happens amid financial strains and increased pressure on council services, including social care.

The council overspent £16.5m last year, mostly on children’s social care.

It aims to raise an extra £3.3m with the tax hike that will see Band D residents pay £1,584.45 overall, the News Shopper reported.

This is is a 5.76 per cent overall increase in council tax, including an increase in Greater London Authority charges of £26.28.

Cabinet member for finance, Councillor Amanda de Ryk, was quoted as saying: “It is made up of 2.99 per cent increase to core council tax, which is the maximum the government allows us, and a two per cent increase for the social care precept.”

The social care precept is funding used to pay for social care services for adults.

Care-leavers up to the age of 25 will not pay any council tax.

Lewisham Council plans to cut £21m from its budget over the next two years, with £8m worth of cuts agreed for the next financial year.

The government has cut Lewisham’s funding by over 60% since 2010 and the number of council staff has nearly halved.


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