Responding to council tax localisation

The localisation of the council tax scheme, alongside a reduction in funding, will again mean that local authorities will have to make some difficult decisions about who they subsidise going forward.

In some areas, councils have been able to divert funds to continue exempting households from council tax. For example, in Solihull, the council is continuing its council tax exemptions for one more year. It secured the funding to achieve this by swapping the exemption from empty houses to fund a continuing exemption for low-income households. However, it is unclear how sustainable this is going forward and this may not be feasible for areas with few empty houses and many low-income families.

Areas with high levels of poverty often have low council tax receipts, so extending exemptions in low-income areas would be difficult.