In light of the Scottish Government budget, agreed on 31 January, new powers have been made available to Councils across Scotland, including the ability to raise Council Tax charges by up to 4.79%. To reflect this, a standalone section has been added to South Ayrshire Council's public engagement exercise (launched on 30 January 2019) which directly considers Council Tax.
South Ayrshire Council and the Social Work element of the South Ayrshire Health and Social Care Partnership face a significant forecast budget deficit of £17m* in 2019-20 (*£11m and £6m respectively). A 4.79% increase in Council Tax, which makes up around 21% of the Council's overall budget, equates to 16p a day, or £1.13 a week or £58.64 a year for a Band D property.
The Council is running a concentrated public engagement exercise until midnight on Sunday 17 February, 2019. There has been a strong response so far with around 1,000 people having taken the time to give us their feedback.
Alongside the main survey an additional separate section has now been included asking people to give us their views on the need for a Council Tax increase.
Comments made before midnight on Sunday, 17 February will considered as part of the budget setting process for 2019/20. Online feedback and discussions with the community will continue through the year to help assess the budget's impact and to inform future decisions.