This year's Council Tax bills start coming through residents' doors this week.
Oxford City Council collects not only its own proportion of the Council Tax, but also the proportion that goes to Oxfordshire County Council, Thames Valley Police, and, where applicable, parish councils. These are known as precepts.
The Government continues to cut council funding. It has slashed almost all of the City Council’s Revenue Support Grant since 2010. Revenue Support Grant has decreased by 56.85 per cent, from £1,460k in 2017/18 to £630k in 2018/19. The City Council will receive no Revenue Support Grant at all after 2018/19.
Despite these harsh financial pressures the City Council has worked hard to keep the Council Tax rise to a minimum whilst preserving the services it provides for residents. It means that Council Tax for a band D property in 2018/19 will be £298.86. That is an increase of just £8.67, or 2.99 per cent a year on the figure for 2017/18. City Council services will cost just a little over £5.73 a week in 2018/19.
Whilst the City Council collects Council Tax for other Oxfordshire authorities, it has no say in setting the level. The proportion of the Council Tax that the City collects for other authorities amounts to 84.1 per cent of the total charge collected.
Oxfordshire County Council’s Band D Council Tax figure for 2018/19 will be £1,426.19. This includes the Adult Social Care Precept of £103.47. The Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley have increased their Band D charge by 7 per cent.
Councillor Ed Turner, Board Member for Finance and Asset Management, said: "Oxford continues to face severe pressures. Housing availability and affordability remain critical problems. We will continue to improve our council-owned homes, ensuring increased levels of energy efficiency and modernisation, and we will continue to fund homelessness prevention at well over £1 million a year, with an additional £880k invested over the next four years.
"We are also committed to maintaining the £1.5 million budget that supports voluntary and community organisations that provide so many valuable services. We will invest in the Covered Market, promote the Oxford Living Wage and establish Oxford Direct Services as a Local Authority Trading Company to establish an additional income stream for the Council."
"Through increased efficiency as well as income and service charges we will continue to maintain our services to the people of Oxford, avoid compulsory redundancies and maintain a major programme of investment in the city."
For more information visit the Council Tax page.