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We'd have cut council tax, say Lib Dems

PUBLISHED: 09:41 08 March 2010 | UPDATED: 09:24 01 August 2010

A COUNCIL tax freeze in South Norfolk has been criticised by Liberal Democrats - who said if they had been in power they would have cut council tax by three per cent.

A COUNCIL tax freeze in South Norfolk has been criticised by Liberal Democrats - who said if they had been in power they would have cut council tax by three per cent.

Last week councillors on South Norfolk Council agreed a 0pc rise in the authority's precept, despite an officer recommendation to increase its part of the council tax bill by 1.86pc.

John Fuller, leader of the council, said he was proud to present a balanced budget, despite the impact of the recession and said because of some “windfalls” and good management, the council had the option of a tax freeze.

Over the past 12 months, the council has cut £2m out of its budget, which has seen the loss of 40 jobs, but no compulsory redundancies.

But the Lib Dems said money left over from the days when the council owned its own social housing - known as the housing revenue account - could have been passed back to residents in the form of a 3pc cut in council tax, while some of the cuts which have been made could have been reversed.

Murray Gray, leader of the Lib Dem group, said: “Under the Lib Dems the council tax in South Norfolk was kept within the lowest 25pc of councils in the country.

“The 'windfalls' that the council is receiving should enable it to go further by reducing council tax at a time when the public is struggling to cope with the impacts of the recession.

“We would reduce the council tax by 3pc for one year and return it to 2009/10 levels in 2011/12.”

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