Brentwood Borough Council

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Brentwood Borough Council

FOI 5475

Local Council Tax Scheme

Request

1. Is the council planning to make any changes (other than non-financial changes, e.g. changes in terminology) to its Council Tax Benefit (CTB) system under Council Tax Support (CTS) from April 2013?

If the answer to 1) is ‘No’, the council need not fulfil the remainder of this request. Otherwise, please continue.

2. What is the maximum percentage of a working age CTS claimant’s council tax bill that will be funded under the chosen/preferred CTS scheme? For example, if the maximum CTS payment will be for 75% of a council tax bill, please give 75% as the answer. This excludes any exemptions for defined vulnerable groups (e.g. disability benefit claimants).

3. What is the existing in-year non-collection rate for council tax across all households (i.e. including both CTB claimants and non-claimants)? Please give this as a percentage figure – so, if 98.75% of council tax payments are made without falling into arrears during the financial year, please give 1.25% as the response to this question. The council may use figures for the last completed financial
year; please do not use figures that include 2012/13 council tax payments that have not yet fallen due within the definition of
‘non-collection’.

4. What is the (estimated or confirmed) forecast in-year non-collection rate for council tax charged to CTB claimants under the
council's proposed CTS scheme for 2013/14? In other words, a non-collection rate specific to claimants under the CTS scheme, and
excluding non-claimants – the preference would be for a figure specific to working age CTS claimants, but if that is not available, a
figure for all CTS claimants will suffice (please specify which definition applies to the council’s response). Please provide both a
percentage figure (i.e. the percent of all council tax due from CTS claimants that the council forecasts will not be paid within the
correct financial year), and a total financial value for non-paid council tax charged to CTS claimants (e.g. £750,000).

If in doubt re 4), the council should take the amount of money it is seeking to save from the CTB system via changes to CTS (excluding any cross-subsidised savings from other measures, such as cutting second homes/empty properties council tax discounts), take the amount of money it is budgeting to receive from CTS claimants, and calculate the non-collection rate from there.

If no CTS-specific figure is available for 4), please provide a response to 5) below [if a figure for 4) has been given, please ignore
5)]:

5. Please provide a forecast in-year non-collection rate for all council tax payments for 2013/14, including those by non-CTS
claimants, giving both a percentage figure and financial value, and also provide a financial value for 3) in addition to the percentage
figure already requested.


Response

1. Yes
2. We will be introducing a two tier system. For claimants in remunerative work (16 hours or more per week) entitlement will be based on 100% of liability up to Band D. For out of work claimants the rate will be 80%.
3. 97.9%
4. We anticipated a .5% impact on the collection rate, however we are employing early interventions officers to ensure that the impact of the collection fund is minimal. We are therefore assuming no drop in collection.
5. N/A