Council Tax Discretionary Discounts

Council Tax Discretionary Discounts

 

Facts:

On 3 November 2016, full council reviewed the council tax discretionary discounts and agreed to amend the scheme for 2017/18. This includes:

·        Reducing the discretionary discount on unoccupied and furnished dwellings with planning restriction on periods of occupancy from 50% to 10%. This will apply to about 1,700 properties and save an estimated total of £364,000 for Norfolk County Council, Norfolk Constabulary, and Great Yarmouth Borough Council.

 

·        Changing the discount on empty homes from a 100% discount for a period of 3 months to a 100% discount for 1 month. This will apply to around 5,400 homes and save an estimated total of £232,000 for Norfolk County Council, Norfolk Constabulary, and Great Yarmouth Borough Council.

 

·        Removing the 5% discretionary discount on second homes/empty furnished dwellings and charging full council tax. This will apply to about 830 properties and save an estimated total of £23,000 for Norfolk County Council, Norfolk Constabulary, and Great Yarmouth Borough Council.

 

Cllr Graham Plant, the council leader, said: “Great Yarmouth Borough Council, like other Norfolk councils, has reviewed the discretionary discounts on council tax which local authorities can choose to offer, or not, under national legislation. The amended scheme will come into effect from April 2017.

 

“As part of wider efforts to bring empty homes back into use as quickly as possible, full council has changed the 100% discount period for empty homes, meaning the owner pays full council tax after one month of the property being vacant, instead of the current three months.   

 

“Separately, full council has removed the 5% discretionary discount on second homes and reduced the discretionary discount on unoccupied and furnished dwellings with planning restriction on periods of occupancy from 50% to 10%. This ensures that owners of second and holiday homes make a fair contribution to the provision of local services, while recognising that they do not live in that property all year.

 

“The discretionary discounts, last reviewed in Great Yarmouth in 2013, are wholly optional and the changes will result in savings for three local authorities at a time when all public bodies face financial challenged. Great Yarmouth Borough Council will invest its savings to continue delivering on public priorities, which includes housing.”

 

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