A CONSERVATIVE councillor has criticised council leaders for the ‘record high’ tax increase.

Oxfordshire County Council, run by a Liberal-Labour-Green coalition, announced earlier this week that council tax is anticipated to rise by 4.99 per cent.

This is the highest legal amount councils can raise tax with 2.99 per cent being the core council tax and the further two per cent being allowed for top-tier authorities for the social care precept.

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However, Conservative county councillors have criticised this move by the coalition.

On Twitter, councillor Liam Walker said: “The coalition at Oxford plan to hike up council tax to the highest legal amount.

“Yet again our money being spent on pet projects rather than frontline services. Like £3m on planting trees as I am assume they’re that delusional they actually think money grows on them.”

Announcing the tax hike, a statement from the council said: “In November, the council launched a consultation on the basis of potential budget shortfalls of £44 million.

“This was made up of £27m of inflationary pressures and £17m of other demand led pressures with £35m of savings proposed and a £9m overall gap.

“Since then, there have been a number of additions to funding from different sources but also rises in financial pressures.

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“Overall, government has proposed £20.2m of extra funding for social care, made up of £11.3m in grants and a proposed additional £8.9m from an anticipated council tax rise of 4.99 per cent.”


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This story was written by Gee Harland. She joined the team in 2022 as a senior multimedia reporter.

Gee covers Abingdon, Didcot, Wallingford and Wantage.

Get in touch with her by emailing: gee.harland@newsquest.co.uk

Follow her on Twitter @geeharland