Those receiving benefit to help them pay their council tax are urged to see if the money they get will change after a cut in Government funding.
The reduction in council tax support means that certain claimants of working age will now have to pay a contribution towards their council tax bill.
The vast majority of West Norfolk Council’s 13,500 claimants will be unaffected, as they are pensioners or have children under five. However, some 4,500 will notice a difference to the amount of council tax support they receive from April 1.
Letters are being sent to advise them to check their council tax bill as it will detail how they are affected by the change.
Anyone can find out what the impact of the change will be on their council tax support by using the online calculator at www.west-norfolk.gov.uk.
as they are either of pension age or are working age but are in a protected group. For example they may have children under five, or may receive disability premium or carer’s allowance.
Nick Daubney, council leader, said: “When the government transferred the former council tax benefit scheme to us last year, it also reduced the amount of funding available for the scheme. We subsidised the scheme last year to protect residents from the reduction in their benefits, but we knew the changes would have to come in this year.
“We worked up our own scheme, based on the funding available and the criteria set out by government.
“We consulted on the scheme in 2012 and in the autumn of 2013. The scheme was then adopted for implementation from 1 April this year.”
Mr Daubney said: “Under the new scheme, people of working age, who are not in a protected group, will only receive 75% of their entitlement. Pensioners and people with at least one child under five, or who are in receipt of disability premium or carers allowance will be unaffected under the new scheme. We also want to help people who are working so from April anyone with earnings can keep an extra £10 per week before it affects their council tax support entitlement”