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Fourth-year council tax freeze - What you may pay in 2015/16

Final figures have still to be agreed, but an average band D householder in Boston town could pay a total of £1,464 council tax from April 1.

In the villages amounts will vary as parish councils set different demands, but the average bill for a band D property out of town could be £1,481.

Boston Borough Council's Cabinet has recommended a freeze for 2015/16 of the amount of your council tax which it retains. For the average property (band D) this would mean the council's demand for its share of the total council tax bill would be £168.39 - no increase since April, 2010.

The lion's share of your council tax payment is to Lincolnshire County Council, with an amount going to Lincolnshire Police and then smaller amounts going for Boston's special town rate and, the equivalent in the villages, the parish rate. An amount is also collected by the internal drainage boards.

So far the indications are that the county council and Lincolnshire Police both want to increase their demand by 1.9 per cent, but these have not been settled yet.

All figures have still to be confirmed, but latest approximations indicate a band D council tax bill for 2015/16 could break down like this: Lincolnshire County Council £1085.94, Lincolnshire Police £197.54, Boston Borough Council £168.39, including an amount for internal drainage boards, special Boston town rate for those living in Boston town wards and parish council precepts for those living in the villages. In the current financial year for a band D property these were £12.72 for Boston town area and an average of £29.96 for parish councils.

Boston Borough Council's finance portfolio holder, Cllr Aaron Spencer, told Cabinet that challenges ahead remained but he could recommend a council tax freeze, which would enable the council to receive the Government's one per cent freeze grant, with no reduction in frontline services.

Following public consultation the 2015/16 budget will go before Cabinet in February for recommendations to the full council tax-setting meeting on March 2.

Cllr Spencer said the freeze recognised the "tough times" everyone was facing.

This year's financial settlement from Government has reduced by 15 per cent from 2014/15 levels - down by £760,000.

He said: "We must continue to manage our finances rigorously and spend every penny wisely for the benefit of the people we serve. This budget ensures the council does more with less."

Have your say on the budget proposals. Use the link below then go to Cabinet meetings for the month of January 2015 to view all the Budget Setting Report and Medium Term Financial Strategy 2015/16 - 2019/20 documents. Email your comments to Nichola.Holderness@boston.gov.uk or write to Budget 2015/16 Consultation, Nichola Holderness, Boston Borough Council, Municipal Buildings, West Street, Boston, PE21 8QR. Your comments must arrive no later than Thursday, February 5, 2015.

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