An interesting survey by the Municipal Journal and the Local Government Information Unit on the attitudes of Council Finance officers to the Council Tax freeze. It suggests as many as 95% of councils will end up accepting the funding to freeze (or cut) Council Tax. That would mean only a couple of dozen going ahead with an increase. But the survey isn't definitive. It was for 81 councils out of around 400. Perhaps we will end up with a mere 90% of councils freezing or cutting tax. The general message with the survey confirms is that it will be overwhelmingly accepted.
Yet in rather the ways that turkeys don't vote for Christmas the Council Finance officers don't like the deal which serves as an effective constraint on their revenue raising. They would like to be able to push up tax without the pesky requirement for approval of residents in a referendum.
81% said that this should be the last time incentives to offer a freeze are made available.
The most alarming aspect of the survey is that the MJ and the LGIU appear to believe that the decision makers in all this are the Council Finance officers rather than the councillors. By their enthusiasm for responding to the survey the bureaucrats seem to agree. If they want to get involved in making the decisions they should stand for election.