Council rents and parking charges raise nearly three times more money than the Council Tax in Conservative Westminster, according to figures revealed by Labour Councillors.
This year Westminster Council’s 12,000 tenants will pay £72 million a year in rent and motorists will pay the Council £52 million a year in parking charges and fines – at total of £126 million. In contrast, the Council Tax raises £46 million a year from the 110,000 households in Westminster.
And while the Council Tax has been frozen for the past few years as a result of a Government subsidy, Council rents went up 3.8% in 2013 and by 6.96% in 2012, and the cost of a residents’ parking permit went up by 22.6% over the period 2012-2014.
And with Council rents to rise again in 2014, the amount paid by Council tenants, amongst the poorest of Westminster’s residents, is set to increase even further above the amount collected in Council Tax.
Councillor Paul Dimoldenberg, Leader of the Labour Group, said;
“Westminster Conservatives are piling on the cost of living agony for low and middle income residents with constant rent increases for Council tenants and for parking permit charges that residents cannot avoid. The amount raised by the Council Tax is becoming less and less important to the Conservatives as the Council rakes in more and more money from other sources. It is all very well setting a low Council Tax but if the Council is hiking up rent and parking charges with above-inflation increases then residents still feel the Conservatives’ cost of living pain. Westminster has the highest Council rents and parking charges in the UK – that says everything about whose side the Conservatives are on.“