Questionnaires are being posted to every household in the city to enable residents to give their views on Wolverhampton's Council Tax Reduction Scheme which will be introduced next April subject to Cabinet approval.
Setting out the reasons for the wide ranging consultation which runs until 11 November, 2013, Wolverhampton City Council's Cabinet Member for Resources Councillor Andrew Johnson said: "In March 2013 the Government abolished the national Council Tax Benefit scheme, cutting £3 million from the grant the council received to fund the scheme.
"We're now facing a further Government cut of £600,000 from the scheme, adding to our budget shortfall and leaving us facing a hard decision. We need to balance council finances and it would be irresponsible to make an already huge funding gap even worse. We are therefore proposing a further reduction in Council Tax support to replace the cut in Government grant.
"If the proposals are taken forward, everyone of working age will have to pay at least 12% of their council tax - at the moment, they have to pay at least 8.5%.
"In these proposals, we are continuing to focus support on people who are disabled or are caring for disabled friends or relatives or who have children. As people of pensionable age are protected from reductions in benefits, none of these proposals will affect them.
"We think it's important that all residents understand the reasons, and have the opportunity to have their say on the proposals."
The council will consult residents in a variety of ways including an online questionnaire accessible through its consultation webpages at Type=links;Linkid=2640;Title=Council Tax Reduction Scheme;Target=_blank;, roadshow promotions and the mailing of a questionnaire to every household.
- released: Thursday 26 September, 2013