Deadline reminder as hundreds share views on council tax proposals

Over 300 people have so far had their say on Westmorland and Furness Council’s proposals for changes to council tax from April.

The budget consultation will remain open until 19 January 2024 for residents and businesses to share their views.

Details of the consultation and how to respond can be found on the council’s website at:

Paper copies of the consultation document are also available in the council’s main offices in Barrow, Kendal and Penrith, as well as at local libraries and several other front facing buildings.

The council is asking for feedback on five key proposals to:

  • increase the rate of council tax for 2024/25 by 2.99% and implement the Government’s 2% rise for the Adult Social Care precept – making a total increase of 4.99%.
  • increase the council tax rate paid on second homes as part of our plan to tackle the affordable housing crisis by introducing a second homes premium of 100% from 1 April 2025.
  • from 1 April 2024 apply the empty homes premium on properties that are substantially unfurnished after 1 year – rather than the current 2 years.
  • from 1 April 2024 increase the empty homes premium on properties that are substantially unfurnished for more than 10 years from 300% to 400%.
  • apply an inflationary uplift of 6.7% on our discretionary fees and charges.

The proposals are intended to ensure that the new council can continue to provide essential local services and deliver on the ambitious vision and priorities in its Council Plan.

Councillor Andrew Jarvis, Westmorland and Furness Council’s Cabinet Member for Finance, said:

“I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to respond so far. As you would expect, there are a wide range of views on what we are proposing, both in support and opposition. We are keen to hear from as many people as possible, so I’d encourage anyone who hasn’t yet to have a look at the budget consultation and let us know what they think.”A teal banner featuring the Westmorland and Furness Council logo and following text: Funding our future together. Budget consultation 2024/25.

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