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A million pounds of council tax income lost to the Vale council due to coronavirus

 

A million pounds of council tax income has been lost to the Vale of Glamorgan council due to the coronavirus.

The financial impact of Covid-19 means many people have been unable to pay council tax on time, meaning councils are receiving less income.

In the Vale of Glamorgan, council tax collection rates were down by 1.1 per cent, at the end of June.

Council Leader Neil Moore said: “The revenue position is bound to be challenging, and it will continue to be challenging, because I don’t think Covid is going to go away quite as quickly as people think.”

He made the comments in a public meeting of the cabinet, on September 7, where councillors were updated on how Covid-19 has impacted council finances from April to July.

Cllr Moore said: “There has been a 1.1 per cent reduction in council tax collection, as compared to the same time last year. This equates to the loss of £1 million. The position is being closely monitored.

“We are writing to people asking them if they’re in a position to continue to pay, but we have also delayed payments to those people who have requested it.”

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Some council tax payers in the Vale have deferred their payments from April and May this year to February and March next year.

Elsewhere, the council has suffered a “substantial” loss of funding from other sources of income.

Cllr Moore said: “We’ve shut down our car parks, leisure centres were closed. We’re out of lockdown as such, but we still have to be careful, and we’re still losing income.

“Some funding has been covered by the Welsh Government to cover some of these financial pressures. It’s early in the financial year and this year is going to be even more uncertain than usual — and it looks like there could be another spike.”

Between March and July, the council asked the Welsh Government for £6,416,000 in grant funding to cover the extra costs fo Covid-19. So far the council has received £3,792,000 in grant funding.

Extra costs to the council include providing childcare for key workers, buying huge stocks of personal protective equipment, and upgrading IT for council workers to be able to work from home.

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