Dudley Council is consulting on proposed changes to its council tax reduction (CTR) scheme which will streamline the process and particularly help claimants on Universal Credit (UC).
CTR reduces the amount of council tax that low income households (including those claiming UC) have to pay to the local authority.
Currently, all households have to make an application in order to be assessed for a CTR reduction. Those who do apply and receive CTR can see their council tax bill fluctuate if there is a change in their circumstances. This means they could end up amending their payments on a regular basis.
The council wishes to make the process simpler and more streamlined. It is consulting on two elements.
These are 1) to treat any award of UC as an automatic application for CTR and 2) to only issue a new council tax bill if changes in circumstances see a claimant’s CTR award change up or down by £3 a week or more. This approach will make the system easier for both customers and the council.
Iain Newman, Director of Finance and Legal Services said:
As people’s circumstances can change on a regular basis, it means we have to frequently issue updated bills, which can be confusing for residents.
This new approach, if approved, will allow us to award council tax reduction in a more streamlined way and reduce the admin burden for both parties.
The consultation runs from 18 November to 12 January. To complete the survey online visit https://www.dudley.gov.uk/residents/benefits/council-tax-reduction-scheme-202021-consultation/
Paper copies are available at Dudley Council Plus, libraries and other council receptions.
Notes to editors