HOUSEHOLDERS face the prospect of two years of above-inflation council tax rises and cuts in services unless the Scottish Executive steps in to fill a £1 billion "black hole" in local authority funding.This morning I upped the amount to £190 per month - a 5.56% increase. Hopefully that'll be enough.
But it wouldn't be in the county of my birth:
Last night, senior local government sources claimed that, faced with these increased burdens, at least one council - understood to be Dumfries and Galloway - was considering a council tax rise of up to 17 per cent.Seventeen percent! To think that my late grandfather was a Dumfriesshire councillor.
The councils' spokesman says:
the only answer was more money from the ExecutiveThe Executive blames the councils.
I note that the Dumfries Council is:
a Coalition of Independent, Liberal Democrat and SNP Councillors.and that the local Conservatives
... have reached a common understanding with the Administration about Priorities, Projects and Principles and look to our contribution in Business Review and Performance activities and the scrutiny of service delivery at area level.Well, I hope that David Cameron is watching Dumfries to see how the local Tories "scrutinise" the proposed 17% tax rise. Perhaps our David will have to send Bob Geldof to Dumfries to help the poor taxpayers. He'll need a map of the local lampposts and a good supply of rope.