Local Government Finance

Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 22nd February 2012.

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Photo of Caroline Lucas Caroline Lucas Green, Brighton, Pavilion

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the contribution by the Minister for Housing and Local Government of 8 February 2012, Official Report, column 372, on local government finance, when he expects to announce arrangements for future grant funding for local authorities; if he will ensure local authorities are informed of his plans for the council tax base in 2013-14 before they take a decision on freezing council tax; for what reasons this information has not yet been provided; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Grant Shapps Grant Shapps The Minister for Housing

Next steps on our proposals on local government finance for 2013-14 onwards were set out in the policy document on the local government resource review issued on 19 December 2011. As part of this work, we will look at a number of technical issues concerning how we set the baseline for the new system, with full consultation following, in the event of any propositions being put forward. One of the issues to be considered is the case for making any change to the shares of relative need and resource.

Councils therefore cannot assume that they are necessarily increasing their spending power for future years by rejecting the freeze this year and instead increasing their council tax. Decisions on the final shape of the scheme will follow that consultation and will be announced in line with the usual settlement timetable.

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