Government takes action on council tax for fourth year – which the Labour Party is opposing says Eric Pickles

Official Government figures today confirm that council tax bills have been cut in real terms across England this year, thanks to the Government's fourth year council tax freeze says Eric Pickles.

Overall, this means that council tax has fallen in real terms by 11% under this Government, providing greater financial security for hardworking people.

The statistics show there is only a 0.9% average change in council tax across England this year, with two-thirds of councils freezing. A number of local authorities across the country are cutting council tax in cash terms. In London, bills are falling in cash terms by -0.4%, in part thanks to Boris Johnson.

• Conservative councils cost you less: Analysis of today's figures show that Conservative councils continue to provide lower levels of council tax than Labour or Liberal Democrat councils. Averaged across tiers, Conservative-controlled councils charge £89 a year less than Labour-controlled councils on a Band D home, and £106 a year less than Liberal Democrat-controlled councils.

• Local Conservatives supporting the freeze: A total of 128 Conservative-controlled councils are freezing council tax, compared with 54 Labour councils. Three-quarters of Conservative councils are freezing, compared to only half of Labour councils.

• Council tax doubled under Labour: Under Labour, council tax bills in England hit a record £1,439 a year on an average Band D home by April 2010. Bills more than doubled under Labour (+109%). By contrast, the cumulative effect of the lower council tax since 2010 is worth up to £706 compared to a five per cent rise in each of the last four years for a Band D home.

• Labour want higher council tax: In Government, Labour Ministers opposed a council tax freeze. In Opposition, Labour's Shadow Ministers still continue to oppose the council tax freeze. The Labour-led Welsh Government has refused to freeze council tax, despite funding from the UK Government.

Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, said:

Eric Pickles (Open Govt Licence)

Eric Pickles (Open Govt Licence)

"Under Labour, council tax bills more than doubled. But Conservatives in Government have been working to keep council tax down, giving hardworking people greater financial security.

"Thanks to our long-term economic plan, we have been able to give extra government funding to town halls to help freeze council tax, despite the need to pay off Labour's deficit. This has cut bills by more than eleven per cent in real terms. People have more in their pocket, and are no longer facing the threat of soaring bills.

"Labour are the party of higher council tax. Their Labour-led Welsh Government has refused to freeze council tax, Labour want new taxes on family homes and Labour councils across the country charge more and deliver less."

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