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'Stop local services rather than increase council tax in 2014' say Sedgemoor residents

By cfayfineran  |  Posted: January 01, 2014

'Stop local services rather than increase council tax in 2014' say Sedgemoor residents

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Residents of the Sedgemoor district would be in favour of reducing or stopping local services rather than increasing council tax, according to a new report.

Sedgemoor District Council has recently completed its budget consultation exercise, which helps inform the process of deciding where money will be spent in the future.

A total of 1,210 completed forms were returned from those sent to a random sample of residents and handed out at various meetings during the consultation period.

There was a list of services which residents were asked to show how important they feel each was.

The results show that Waste Collection received the most very important votes followed by community safety.

Residents were slightly more in favour of reducing/stopping local services rather than increasing council tax.

Sedgemoor currently collects council tax on behalf of Somerset County Council, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue, Avon and Somerset police, parish and town councils and Sedgemoor District Council.

Out of each £1 collected, Sedgemoor is allocated 9p towards the services it provides.

The majority of completed forms showed that residents felt this portion of the council tax represents value for money.

A spokesman for Sedgemoor District Council said: “Sedgemoor has four priorities – economic growth; efficiency and value; recycling and carbon reduction and housing.

“Residents were asked to rank them according to their importance – efficiency and value was considered the highest; with economic growth following closely behind.

“For the last five years efficiency and value has been considered one of the most important priorities.”

However, the responses received were missing voices of the younger residents of Sedgemoor.

The spokesman said: “The council are aware that they are receiving a lack of responses to this consultation from the 16 to 19 years age group and are taking steps to improve this for next year.”

The full committee report on Budget Consultation can be found at www.sedgemoor.gov.uk/budget consultation2013.

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