Taxpayers facing huge legal bills

COUNCIL tax-payers in three Suffolk districts will have to pay massive legal bills after hopes of an east/west split were blown away by the Court of Appeal in London in London.

COUNCIL tax-payers in three Suffolk districts will have to pay massive legal bills after hopes of an east/west split were blown away by the Court of Appeal in London in London.

Suffolk Coastal, St Edmundsbury, and Forest Heath councils had taken the Boundary Committee for England to court after it failed to include an east/west split in its proposals for a shake-up of local government in the county.

However the judges threw out the appeal - and ordered the councils to pay the legal costs of the Boundary Committee as well as their own.

That could force up council tax bills as the cost could run into tens, if not hundreds of thousands of pounds.


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The decision means that the Boundary Committee will now recommend the minister chooses between two options: a “North Haven” council including Ipswich, Felixstowe, and the Shotley peninsula, and a rural Suffolk council.

The other recommendation is for the “One Suffolk” option with a single council running all local authority services in the county.

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A final ministerial decision is not expected until next year.

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