Belfast rates frozen for second year

Belfast rates frozen for second year

Belfast City Council has agreed on a rates freeze for a second year running.

The move was decided at a council meeting on Monday evening.Alderman Gavin Robinson said it will be the first time in 41 years that the city has seen no rates increase in two successive years."A zero increase is effectively a 2% cut in real terms when inflation is considered and when taken with last year's rates freeze, when inflation was 2.7%, amounts to almost a 5% reduction in the district rate during the past two years," the DUP man said."It is vital that the council gets the balance right between not overburdening our ratepayers in the current economic climate and ensuring we can still invest in the city to support the recovery and continue to provide excellent, value for money services."To that end, the main reason we have been able to achieve the rates freeze is due to our efficiency programme that has now realised £18m of savings during the past seven years and will meet the target of £20m by the end of the 2015 period."Mr Robinson added that this will be the last time the council strikes the rate in its current form before the local government reforms see a new council take over in 2015.


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