Council tax to be reduced

Longton Parish Councillors with Tom Calderbank, Preston Bus Manager

Longton Parish Councillors with Tom Calderbank, Preston Bus Manager

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There’s good news for residents of Longton - the parish council is reducing its part of the council tax bill.

After after hiking it’s precept by 235 per cent this year, councillors decided at a meeting this week to reduce the bill by 12 per cent for 2017.

Councillor Graham Gooch, chairman of the Parish Council said: “Last year we increased our precept in order to save our number 12 bus service, which would have been scrapped by the withdrawal of LCC subsidy. We were able to double the service to a half-hourly service during the day on weekdays and provide a late service from Preston on Fridays and Saturdays.

“While we have been running it we have tweaked the service a bit to provide a service to Hill Road South in Penwortham and a later service from Preston to get people home from work.

“We had budgeted £60,000 for this service but it came in at £50,000 so we can reduce the council tax paid by people in the villages.”

Resident Denise Wood agreed with feedback it was worth the extra money.

She said: “How else are school children, college students, the elderly, people who work in Preston, people who don’t drive etc supposed to get about otherwise?”

Council tax is made up of different precepts, including the County Council, borough council, the police and fire service. In some areas where there is a parish council, these too charge an amount to fund local schemes and infrastructure.

The 12 per cent decrease for the next year is likely to only make pennies worth of difference per week to households in the village.

When the 235 per cent hike was announced for this current financial year, it increased the tax bill paid to the parish council from £7.65 to £27.01 for a Band D property.