Council taxpayers in Kirklees face an increase of almost 5% on their bills from April.

Councillors approved the 4.99% rise in council tax at a budget meeting on Wednesday night.

The increase means a £1 per week rise in bills for residents living in a Band A property and £1.50 per week for Band D homes.

Explaining the increase, Kirklees Council leader Shabir Pandor said: “There’s a funding crisis in adult social care and these vulnerable people need and deserve our support more than ever.

“The pace and change in demand is increasing at a much faster rate than we expected and the pandemic has highlighted more challenges.

“The additional funding will help but it’s nowhere near the actual amount we need to ensure we provide our growing elderly population with the service they deserve in retirement.

“We need to raise council tax this year to help bridge the funding gap because we simply have no other option.

“However, I’m urging Government to give us a sustainable, long-term solution that our vulnerable and elderly people need and deserve.

“Since 2010 we have lost 60% of direct Government funding and we have been forced to rely more and more on raising council tax.

“This is something the Local Government Association continues to highlight and is pressing the Government to develop a long-term funding strategy and to publish its green paper on the future of caring for our growing elderly adult population.

The basic council tax increase is 1.99% and Kirklees has added another 3%.

Clr Pandor said: “The total 4.99% increase means a £1 per week increase in bills for residents living in a Band A property and £1.50 per week for Band D homes.

“This will give us an additional £5.6 million to support our most vulnerable, whilst continuing to invest in making Kirklees an even better place to live, work and invest.

“The last thing we want to do after the difficulties the last 12 months has thrown at us is to raise council tax but we sadly have no other option.”

Kirklees Council will invest over £319 million in vital local services in the next financial year as well as devoting £650 million to capital infrastructure improvements across the borough over the next five years.

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