Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 24°C

min temp: 14°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Ipswich: Borough owed more than £3million in unpaid council tax

13:40 22 January 2013

Millions owed in unpaid council tax

Millions owed in unpaid council tax

Archant

MORE than £3million of council tax was still owed to the cash-strapped borough at the end of last year, shock figures revealed today.

But despite the size of the outstanding debt, councillors have defended the sum – claiming the authority is a “very successful collector” of the tax.

The revelations came following a Freedom of Information request submitted by The Ipswich Star, which showed the council was left chasing £3,194,638.01 of unpaid council tax on December 31, 2012.

But councillor Martin Cook, resources portfolio-holder, said: “Ipswich Borough Council has a reputation as a very successful collector of council tax and we will keep on trying to collect unpaid tax however long it takes as long as it is economically viable.

“That is good business and is only fair to the vast majority who pay their council tax.”

By the end of March last year the outstanding figure stood at £4,712,414.53 – meaning £1,517,776.52 was collected in the last nine months of 2012.

The council insists it works with people who run into difficulties on payment arrangements and urges any resident struggling to pay to contact officers as soon as possible.

An Ipswich Borough Council spokesman said: “Currently 64 per cent of residents pay by direct debit which is the easiest method and we do encourage people to do this.”

On March 31, 2010, £3,534,579.00 was owed, meaning the overall figure dropped by 9.6 per cent in just over two-and-a-half years by December 31, 2012.

The figures also show that 20,363 reminders were issued to tax dodgers between March 31 and December 31 last year – an average of 73 every day.

There were 3,977 court summons in the same period and 3,448 liability orders were granted.

Robert Oxley, campaign manager for the TaxPayers’ Alliance, criticised the large sum of uncollected council tax.

He said: “Ipswich Borough Council needs to explain why there is such a large difference between what they expect to collect and what they are actually managing to bring in.

“The council cannot simply shrug its shoulders at such a large outstanding sum.

“It’s no wonder some people are struggling to pay their council tax though after a decade of hikes.

“It’s important that town halls differentiate between those who simply try to avoid paying and those who can’t afford to when dealing with cases.

“The latter should be helped with easier ways to pay, while the former should be pursued for outstanding bills otherwise taxpayers are left picking up the tab.”

Last year it was announced that the amount of uncollected council tax on a national scale – much dating back several years – stands at £2.3billion.

Is council tax too high?

9 comments

  • I would refuse to collect rubbish for anyone who did not pay their council tax and dump their black bin in their front garden until they did. No doubt these council tax dodgers have enough money to pay for Sky Subscription so should pay their council tax first

    Report this comment

    the opinion man

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

  • And yet they still want to increase their portion of the council tax... IBC are a joke.

    Report this comment

    Fat Lady Sings

    Friday, January 25, 2013

  • £3 million? That's nothing. The country is owed £120 billion A YEAR in tax avoidance by multinational corporations.

    Report this comment

    Origami Penguin

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

  • Am I the only one saying that if they don't pay, then why should I? Just what are the council doing to get this money back? Why are the rest of us being held to ransom by the non-payers. Stop their bin collections to make them pay!

    Report this comment

    N M

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

  • £3m owed well thats a drop in the ocean after spending £21M on civic drive what else will they waste money on next!!!!

    Report this comment

    Nmatthe2

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

  • Council tax is way too high. If the authorities were less greedy, people would pay. It's the same with the Town Centre Shops. Many of of them are closing because of the Council's exorbitant rates.

    Report this comment

    dejosta

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

  • Business rates are not set by the Borough Council. The Council simply collects the rates.

    Report this comment

    Max

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

  • how much of this is due to them over paying council tax benefit payments and then wanting it back at the drop of a hat when they realise THEIR mistake?, totally screwing over the innocent person at the same time

    Report this comment

    tony cowling

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

  • Funny isn't it how £3 million when Councillors are responsible is seen as a job well done in under collection, yet when something in the town needs a couple of thousand spent on it, it says it is too much money and can't afford it!

    Report this comment

    england1770

    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

East Anglian Air Ambulance

A man was airlifted to hospital after a crash in Stowmarket yesterday.

The crash is causing severe delays

Emergency services were called to a crash on the A12 at Eight Ash Green this afternoon to free a man trapped in his car.

Actor and writer Mark Gatiss visited the Riverside Theatre, Woodbridge, in August as part of its Riverside Nights programme

A cinema has revealed plans to install a second screen – 100 years after it opened in a Suffolk town.

12-20 Upper Orwell Street, which could be demolished and regenerated if plans by the East of England Co-op go through

A derelict building in Upper Orwell Street which has been empty for decades could be set for demolition if new plans for the area are approved.

GB Paralympic swimmer, Ryan Crouch, is pictured at Crown Pools in Ipswich.

The Olympics may have finished but the Games are not over yet – next month it is the turn of the Paralympics to take over Brazil.

The EACHFest event held for service users of East Anglia's Children's Hospices and their families

Young people with life-threatening conditions were treated to their very own festival by East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) recently.

Alexanders College at Bawdsey

A boarding school is closing after more than 20 years of educating international students in east Suffolk.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

MyDate24 MyPhotos24