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Letter to local Media - Sept 2015
I read with interest the Newbury Weekly front page story(27th August)
detailing the anonymous West Berkshire councillors who have reportedly
been summoned to court  over council tax arrears.

A similar story line was run in Reading a couple of years ago as I
remember, in which case the offending councillors were actually named.

In fact all these headline stories nicely illustrate is the
difficulties many ordinary people have with what is probably their
largest monthly household bill after their rent or mortgage.

Council Tax is a regressive tax in that those in the lower bands
actually pay proportionally more than those in the higher bands as a
percentage of a home’s value.

The Liberal Party believes that both the regressive nature of the tax
should be revised, and Council Tax should be continuously banded so
that mansion owners and owners of more expensive properties pay more
without any need for a mansion tax.

Ultimately we believe that a properly implemented Land Value Tax would
adequate fund local services, although it has the one drawback in that
it redistributes the income from land rather than redistributing the
ownership of land.

Local taxation in the form of a Council Tax makes local politicians
accountable to the electorate for their decisions; unfortunately they
are no more or less likely than any other person to fall prey to its
financial demand.

Stephen Graham
Newbury Liberal Party(Organiser)

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