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F16/376

Council Tax Collection Rate

Request 

I am writing to you under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to request the following information from you:

1) What was the Council Tax collection rate for the Council for the last three years (2015-16, 2014-15 and 2013-14)?

2) What were the costs over the past three years of Council Tax debt recovery, per pound recovered, and how has this figure been calculated?

3) Please provide details of any initiatives, both current or planned, to use behavioural insights or other specialist communications to increase Council Tax collection rates.

If it is not possible to provide the information requested due to the information exceeding the cost of compliance limits identified in Section 12, I would be grateful if you would please provide advice and assistance, under Section 16 of the Act, as to how I can refine my request to be included in the scope of the Act.

Request Date25 May 2016
Requested byIndividual
Released Date  

17 June 2016

Response

1) What was the Council Tax collection rate for the Council for the last three years (2015-16, 2014-15 and 2013-14)?

    • 2014-15 98.2%
    • 2013-14 98.1%
    • 2015-16 98.4%

2. What were the costs over the past three years of Council Tax debt recovery, per pound recovered, and how has this figure been calculated?

Answer: Sorry but we don't differentiate our costs in terms of the council tax debt recovery,per pound recovered.

3. Please provide details of any initiatives, both current or planned, to use behavioural insights or other specialist communications to increase Council Tax collection rates.

Answer:

  • Currently promoting Direct Debit as the preferred method of payment and promoting this by enclosing a flyer with yearly bills and all new bills which are sent, and offering 12 instalments in the year.
  • Ensuring that we are up to date with the work and CTS claims and we remain so during the year makes a big difference to collection rate because there is no reason to delay payment.
  • We are also looking at self service to help people check on account and make changes there and then within certain parameters so quicker and easier for customers.
  • Also Text Reminders we are looking at sending to customers to prompt them to pay on time.
  • When issuing Summonses we are advising customers of the extra costs incurred if the case is passed to an Enforcement Agent if they do not make payment or an arrangement for payment at the summons stage. Other recovery action we are using are such options as charging orders and insolvency routes to encourage payment.
Refused       
Refusal