Council News

Rise in Council Tax Precept – Hedon Town Council (Revised)

THE PRECEPT to pay for the Hedon component of council tax bills will rise for the new financial year (April 2016 – March 2017). The precept is the amount levied by Hedon Town Council on town council tax payers to provide very local services.

Hedon Town Council Noticeboard car parkIncluded in the budget this year is a Hedon Town Council contribution towards extending car parking facilities at the old railway station yard. A £10,000 contribution from the town council will act as a catalyst in prompting a total investment of around £60,000 from the East Riding of Yorkshire Council to create new car parking bays. This will provide up to 15 spaces which will help ease pressure on town centre parking.

Also, in recognition of the success of last year’s HedFest – the Hedon Festival – the council has agreed to set aside up to £8,000 in the budget to contribute towards the #HedFest16 festival.

The budget agreed by Hedon Town Council at its meeting on January 21st, 2016 was set at £216,300 (an increase of £18,350 from last year) with the precept demand for 2016-2017 set at £156,800. This equates to an increase of £10.92 per *Band D per annum which represents an annual levy of £72.32 on Band D households in the town. Last year’s Band D charge  was £61.40.

Part of the reason for the rise is blamed by the council on the loss of compensatory funding from the Government (via the East Riding of Yorkshire Council) which over the last three years has helped to keep precept levels static or low. The compensation funding awarded to Hedon last year was £8,755 and was nearly double that the year before. This year that compensation amounts to only £4,383.

Additionally, there has been a general rise in the cost of staffing the council, running costs and grounds and other maintenance costs (CCTV, litter bins, bus shelters, etc). As indicated above, the council has also increased the amount it intends to spend on projects and grants.

The Town Council’s website at www.hedon.gov.uk lists some of the responsibilities of the council and the services it provides through the precept. We reproduce that list here for residents’ information:

The Town Council’s responsibilities include the following :

  • The Town Hall building
  • Grass cutting – Far Bank, Market Hill, Twyers Lane, West Lane, Greville Road, Watson Park* plus all the amenity areas.
  • Market Place and the Market
  • Cemetery
  • Church yard and wall maintenance
  • Church clock
  • Distaff Lane store
  • Play area – Greville Road
  • Land:
    • Two fields in Ivy Lane adjacent to the cemetery
    • Ivy Lane – Horsewell
    • Red Cross and Scout Huts
    • Army Cadets (Far Bank)
    • Watson Park
    • Elsie Gate Field (Trustees)
  • Allotments : Sheriff Highway
  • Provision of seats, litter bins and dog bins

In addition to the above, the town council supports projects that benefit local residents – for example, they helped underwrite HedFest – The Hedon Festival in 2015.

*Note:  Each local parish sets its precept expressed as the annual levy on a Band D property. There are eight council tax valuation bands A – H and the actual amount paid is dependent on which valuation band your property is allocated.

6 replies »

  1. Steve has picked up most of Jim’s concerns I think, but I would add that the whole object of the Hedfest event was to give Hedon’s residents, young and old, a great weekend of entertainment and enjoyment, which we know was achieved.
    There were no dissenting voices and the overwhelming feedback from the people of Hedon is that they want us to do it again.
    We were never in it for profit. We employed a professional organiser to whom we paid a basic fee and they were to receive a generous share of any surplus (or would have shared in any loss !!! ) which was an incentive for them to do their very best for us.
    And we think it worked!
    Hedfest could well cost more this year, and the large contribution we received from ERYC is not available again, so we are having to seek investment or sponsorship from wherever we can, and setting aside a sum from our precept is a sensible precaution.
    A lot of people put an enormous amount of work into putting on a show like Hedfest, and the town council really does appreciate their efforts.
    For the odd couple of quid per household I don’t think many will complain.

    John Dennis
    .

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  2. I expect that one of the reasons that Hedon Town Council has raised the precept payable for 2016 is that they have been skating on thin ice and have now realised unfortunately that their application for funding Hedfest 2016 through the Yorkshire Water funding scheme is not applicable, the feared probability being noted and described on page 312 of recent HTC minutes.

    Apparently the possibility of Sponsorship deals was discussed at the same meeting, but theoretically, this will have now been achieved by Mr and Mrs Ratepayer of Hedon coughing up, like it or not!.

    Let us all hope that Hedon Town Council, and Rate payers, obtain a much increased percentage of the profits than the 20% which was achieved from hosting last years event.

                                                                                     Jim Uney, Hedon.
    

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    • Jim, The Council has provided some funding for Hedfest 2016, after the success and high level of participation in the first festival. But it was never predicated on money from Yorkshire Water, which is not available for festivals and events.

      We are however seeking sponsorship from a number of local businesses, which should provide a greater element of funding than the councils precept payers. And if the event generates a surplus then the Council will recoup some of its funding, as we did last year.

      The real drivers behind the increase are the one off cost of the new Car Parking spaces at £10,000 and a need to address the erosion of the Councils reserves after several years of no increases at all.

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    • Thank you Councillors for your views on the subject, but apart from the realisation that the Fifteen parking bays at the old railway station yard are to cost in the region of £4666 each, £ 60,000 of the total being provided by The East Riding of Yorkshire Council, I was well aware of all the other relevant details.
      However, being a alakefic non -motorist, I was unaware of the high cost of providing parking spaces.

      As for the 2016 Hedfest,I trust that all the necessary arrangements / facilities will be in place at the numerous venues around the town, for the disabled, and suitable Loop Systems will be in place for people with hearing problems.

      I wish the Council well in their efforts to find funding through sponsorship deals, the target of which is expected to be in excess of £8000,a similar sum is to be provided by Hedon ratepayers in the first instance.

      Finally, may I be so bold as to ask, “If the Council knew that their Yorkshire Water application was a non starter, due to the condition that funding was not granted for Festivals and events”,as I did, What other project was it for? Regards, Jim Uney.

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    • There used to be one there Phil it was built in the mid eighties but the play equipment became unsafe and it was removed so now it’s just a field. A shame really but plans to reinstate it were met with a great deal of opposition from the local residents.

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