Just got my letter from Southwark Council telling me I need to find 15 percent of my CT from April- I am currently on JSA. Hopefully I won't be in April and I will be paying all my CT- However if not= any ideas where this money is going to come from out of my JSA Benefit? I am currently left after my dd's and so's for bills go out £9.00 a week for food/travel etc and before you ask, I am not entitiled to any other benefits I have checked. Where is this money going to come from Southwark Council?
Sympathy to you ( which doesnt go very far when you have bills to pay!)From April there will be 1000s in the same situation...If you are in bermondsey/old southwark I would contact your MP [email protected] As 'we're all in it together' and 'we're acting in the national interest' he might think it worthwhile lending you a few quid to help you pay your council tax bill.
This is very much a central government initiative, they have cut funding for Council Tax benefit by 10% and excluded over 65's from the cuts, so it's an effective 15% cut. I think it's an absolute disgrace and would prefer that they actually put the council tax up than penalise the poorest.
Not sure it's an SE1 matter though, James might bump us!
Thanks for your support both- yes it is a national disgrace and I will contact Simon
I read though ( and I am sure I could have got this muddled) that it is up to each council to decide how they implement this.
I can only think people won't be able to pay it out of benefits or low incom and the council will wste thousands trying to recover it- how does that help nationally?
I am a foreigner and have fortunately never needed benefits to survive, so my question will probably just show off my ignorance on the subject. I had always assumed the JSA is just for food and daily expenditure? I was under the (obviously wrong) impression you get rent, heating, water etc paid for and then get £70 or whatever it is just to feed yourself? Is child support not paid by the state when a parent is unable to contribute? I am really not trying to aggravate, just interested...
My friend lost her job through redundancy two and a half years ago, she is almost 50 and has worked since she was 16 without fail. She lives in a tiny 2 bedroom flat on the top floor. She gets job seekers allowance. Apparently she will lose part of her housing benefit because she has one bedroom more than her needs, and as Kory states a portion of her council tax benefit.
Anyone in that situation has to pay water rates, and if you are unlucky enough to have estate heating and have to pay every week (sometimes I think its £20?) you have no option but to pay. At least if you have individual heating you can economise....and freeze!
southwark council has heard, over and over again, from people who work with disabled people/people on benefits/people on low incomes etc, that demanding those same people pay 15% council tax is going to cost the council more than the 'saving' they will supposedly make. (to collect, say £3 a week from someone who cannot afford to pay the £3,is going to cost the council much more, from paying someone to be sending intimidating letters to southwark residents, to wasting all that paper/energy, to wasting money on courts etc etc etc)
a number of councils around the uk, including a conservative council in oxfordshire somewhere, are refusing to implement this measure. southwark council heard & saw all this & decided to go ahead and announce they will start charging the disabled, the working poor and those on benefits. (there may already be a thread about this, i may have started it come to think of it)
£70.oo a week is for food- travel- other expenditiure as in tolitries/clothes/misc emergencies. Then Water Rates, Electric and Gas any other payment out like credit card minimums or debt/bank charges and everything imbetween. Also telephone/internet/mobile and postage/stationary etc (for looking for work)Now those on JSA will have to pay out a perecent toward council tax too from this
That is why after paying all out of my weekly benefit I am left with £9.00 for food/travel and I think my outgoings compared to most for bills is quite low. If ( and I am optimistic I won't be) in April I will still be on jSA I cannot pay the shortfall re the council tax.
If £70.00 was just for food- I would have no objections to paying some towards Council Tax. They say people lounge on benefits- any idea how they do it?
If this does go ahead I can see a return of riots similar to the dreadful Poll Tax Riots where people would be taxed for the amount of people in the property rather than per.property. They still went ahead with the Poll Tax and after a while decided it was far to expensive to administer.
I remember being at a meeting and I think the Treasurer was there and I had to put my pennorth in and say that as Southwark was an area with a transient population (may have that word wrong!) it would be nigh on impossible to administer.
In Derby I think they will have a hardship fund for certain cases according the Derby Evening Telegraph.
I feel sorry for people who are in such a terrible financial situation such as Kory.
Thanks Jan the Old One- It is very tough to live on JSA no matter what propoganda the media tell us- I optimistic it in my case is not forever- but I know others are in a far more difficult and often trapped situ.