Council Tax FAQ’s 2019/20

The following list shows the changes in respect of Lancashire County Council, Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner, Lancashire Combined Fire Authority, Fylde Borough Council (including Special Expenses) and Parish / Town Council precepts compared with last year:

 Band D Charge 2018/19 £Band D Charge 2019/20 £Change £Change %
Fylde Borough Council
Borough-wide charge157.66161.814.152.6%
Special Expense Items73.9775.921.952.6%
Major Preceptors
Lancashire County Council1,294.921346.5951.674.0%
Lancashire Police & Crime Commissioner177.45201.4524.0013.5%
Lancashire Combined Fire Authority67.4669.482.023.0%
Town and Parish Councils
Bryning-with-Warton74.9775.460.490.7%
Elswick72.8369.13-3.70-5.1%
Freckleton52.9652.960.000.0%
Greenhalgh-with-Thistleton26.3229.082.7610.5%
Kirkham92.4992.490.000.0%
Little Eccleston-with-Larbreck51.4055.624.228.2%
Medlar-with-Wesham46.4147.130.721.6%
Newton-with-Clifton55.2765.6310.3618.7%
Ribby-with Wrea62.4462.440.000.0%
Singleton45.4347.702.275.0%
Staining70.7170.710.000.0%
St.Annes (Town Council precept)20.7521.560.813.9%
St Annes (Special Expense Items)73.9775.921.952.6%
Treales, Roseacre & Wharles49.6049.600.000.0%
Weeton-with-Preese56.9160.203.295.8%
Westby-with-Plumptons18.0818.080.000.0%
Lytham (Special Expense Items)73.9775.921.952.6%

The change on last year will depend on which area you live in. The following list shows the total change in respect of Lancashire County Council, Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner, Lancashire Combined Fire Authority, Fylde Borough Council (including Special Expenses) and Parish / Town Council precepts compared with last year:

Lytham4.7 % increase in total
Bryning-with-Warton4.6 % increase in total
Elswick4.4 % increase in total
Freckleton4.7 % increase in total
Greenhalgh-with-Thistleton4.9 % increase in total
Kirkham4.6 % increase in total
Little Eccleston-with-Larbreck4.9 % increase in total
Medlar-with-Wesham4.7 % increase in total
Newton-with-Clifton5.3 % increase in total
Ribby-with-Wrea4.7 % increase in total
Singleton4.8 % increase in total
Staining4.6 % increase in total
St Annes4.7 % increase in total
Treales, Roseacre and Wharles4.7 % increase in total
Weeton-with-Preese4.9 % increase in total
Westby-with-Plumpton4.8 % increase in total

This is because in parished areas you will pay an amount to the local parish or town council, and some areas also pay special expenses. The increases will be different for each area. Fylde Borough Council collects Council Tax on behalf of a number of public sector organisations in the area. We collect the money from you and pass it on to them. Your bill is therefore made up of:

The amount payable to Lancashire County Council (including the precept specifically to be used in support of Adult Social Care costs):

  •  The amount payable to Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner
  •  The amount payable to Lancashire Combined Fire Authority
  •  The standard Council Tax payable to Fylde Borough Council
  •  Special expenses (if applicable) and
  •  The amount payable to your local Parish/Town Council (if applicable)

Fylde Borough Council recovers an element of its Council Tax via Special Expenses. These charges are applicable in Lytham and St Annes. Special Expenses in the main are charges for the upkeep of parks and the maintenance of “open space assets” (see next question for a definition of open space assets).

The special expense charge applies in these areas because Fylde Borough Council owns and maintains open space assets in these areas. In other areas of the Borough open space assets are owned and maintained by parish councils who will charge residents accordingly for these services.

In the interests of fairness and balance with this approach Fylde Borough Council charges special expenses in Lytham and St Annes to recover the costs of maintaining the assets it owns. The figure quoted on individual bills for Fylde Borough Council is dependent upon the overall level of “special expenses” recoverable each year.

These are parks, gardens, play areas, and open spaces within the Borough. Examples include Ashton gardens and promenade gardens in St Annes and the Green in Lytham.

Special expenses are charged by Fylde Borough Council in St Annes because even though there is a Town Council, Fylde Borough Council owns and maintains open space assets in St Annes, as it does in Lytham. In the interests of fairness and balance with all other areas of the Borough, Fylde Borough Council recovers these costs via the special expense charge in St Annes. In the other areas, where parish councils own the assets, the costs are charged to local residents by parish councils.

Every 1% increase in Council Tax raises approximately an extra £62,000.

Every Council is required by law to declare its “Band D equivalent” Council Tax. This is the figure upon which the annual increase from the previous year is calculated. It is a very complicated calculation which converts the number of properties in other bands to “band D equivalents”.

For 2019/20 there is an overall Council Tax increase of 2.48% (£4.99), resulting in an average Band D charge for 2019/20 of £206.60. This will mean an increase by 10p per week for a Band D property which will help to safeguard services.

On the Council Tax bills annual changes must be shown to one decimal place, so an increase of 2.48% would be rounded to 2.5%

However, due to a statistical anomaly linked to changes in the tax base, and the fact that the overall charge is made up of a borough-wide charge that all Fylde residents pay, and a special expense charge that only residents in Lytham and St Annes pay, this increase equates to an increase in each of those two elements of 2.64% for each.

As this increase must be shown on the bills to one decimal place, the change for 2019/20 will be shown as 2.6%.

To recognise the particular demand that upper-tier councils (such as Lancashire County Council) face in respect of the growing cost of adult social care for the government has allowed these councils to charge an additional precept to contribute towards the cost of adult social care, in additional to the general increase that relates to funding for general purposes.

Therefore there are now two elements of the Council Tax charge that relate to Lancashire County Council:

  • The general Lancashire County Council charge; and
  • The Lancashire County Council Adult Social Care charge

For 2019/20 Lancashire County Council is to charge an additional 1% Adult Social Care precept in addition to the 2.99% general increase (actually shown on the bills to one decimal place as 3.0%), resulting in an overall 3.99% increase in the part of the Council Tax that is charged by Lancashire County Council.

The actual charges vary according to the Council Tax band in which an individual property is placed according to the usual proportions (see earlier question on Council Tax bandings).

The charge for Adult Social Care is explained in the previous question.

In relation to the increase shown on bills, the government have issued regulations which stipulate how the charge from Lancashire County Council for Adult Social Care is presented on bills, and we have followed the regulations. What appears on 2019/20 bills for Lancashire Adult Social Care is the 2018/19 charge PLUS the 2019/20 charge.

In line with the regulations, the percentage increase shown on the bill is the 2019/20 element of the charge for Adult Social Care as a percentage of the total amount that LCC charged for 2018/19 (that being the main LCC charge PLUS the Adult Social Care charge), which equates to 1.0%.

Effectively for 2019/20 Lancashire County Council have increased their elements of the bill by 3.99% in total – split between 2.99% (actually shown on the bills to one decimal place as 3.0%) on their main charge, and 1.0% for Adult Social Care.

Your Council Tax is distributed and helps pay for services provided by Fylde Borough Council, Lancashire County Council, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Lancashire and Lancashire Fire and Rescue Authority.

More information can be obtained from:

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Lancashire

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Authority

Lancashire County Council and search for “Council Tax”.