Local Council Tax Support Scheme
Local Council Tax Support Scheme consultation 2018/19
The closing date for responses for this consultation is Wednesday 8 November 2017 5pm.
Warrington Council is considering making changes to the Local Council Tax Support Scheme (LCTS) with effect from April 2018 and wants to hear your views on the proposals.
What is this consultation about?
Each year Warrington Borough Council has to decide whether to change the Local Council Tax Support scheme for working age applicants in its area. This year we are consulting on changes that could be made to bring the Council Tax Support scheme in line with the changes made by Central Government in Housing Benefit and Universal Credit.
What is Local Council Tax Support?
Council Tax Support is a Council Tax discount. The level of discount awarded is based on the income of the household.
Why is a change to the Council Tax Support scheme being considered?
Prior to April 2013 there was a national scheme called Council Tax Benefit. Local Councils became responsible for Local Council Tax Support schemes from 1 April 2013. The Council is keen to keep its Council Tax Support scheme aligned with welfare benefits such as Housing Benefit and Universal Credit to assist in administration. As those benefits change, similar changes need to be made to the Council Tax Support scheme. Each of the changes may affect certain claimants and the changes to both Housing Benefit and Universal Credit are to encourage work and may reduce the levels of benefit available in some cases. This will be reflected in Council Tax Support if the changes are made.
Who will this affect?
Working age households in Warrington who currently receive or may apply for Council Tax Support.
Pensionable age households will not be affected as Central Government prescribe the Council Tax Support scheme.
Are there any alternatives to changing the existing Council Tax Support scheme?
The Council has considered ways to make the administration of the scheme simpler and also to replicate the changes in the benefit system generally and you are asked about them in the questionnaire.
Options to change the current Local Council Tax Support Scheme
As explained in the background information, the Council is primarily consulting on the following proposals to change the existing Council Tax Support Scheme from 1 April 2018, which will align the scheme with Housing Benefit and Universal Credit to assist in its administration. Your responses are a part of this consultation.
The following 5 options are being considered and you can read about these on the attached web pages or from the PDF documents listed below.
We would like to hear your views and you can take part in a number of ways:
- Complete our online survey [external link]
- Email your views to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Request a paper copy below
- Write to us at the address below:
Council Tax Support Scheme Consultation
New Town House
To ask for a paper copy of the survey or if you have any concerns or questions about the survey, require the questionnaire in another language or format including large print, Braille, audio or British Sign Language or simply require assistance in completing it please call 01925 443331 or email us using the address above.
The closing date for responses is Wednesday 8 November 2017 5pm.
What happens after the closing date
The information from this consultation will be used by the council to assist in making its decision on the changes to Council Tax Support scheme from 1 April 2018.
The results from the consultation will be published later this year on our website and the council’s executive board will also receive a report of findings and recommendations.
The final decision on the scheme will be made by the council no later than January 2018.
- Option 1 - Fixed Period Assessments [PDF - 254.44 KB]
- Option 2 - Introduce an Income banded scheme [PDF - 178.6 KB]
- Option 3 - Amend scheme for working age claimants [PDF - 176.01 KB]
- Option 4 (a-d) - Amend the scheme with changes made to Housing Benefit rules [PDF - 195.23 KB]
- Option 5 - Retain the current Council Tax scheme [PDF - 176.46 KB]