County Council Tax Hike

3 Feb 2023

News that the Conservatives at County Hall are planning a 5% tax increase couldn't come at a worse time. With household budgets squeezed, it will make things worse for people trying to cope with the cost of living crisis. Residents in band A properties will have to pay £53 more, with the top band H increasing by £159.14.

Most of the increase will be for the Social Care Levy. In 2016 the Conservative Government added an extra charge until it delivered its long promised fix to Social Care. Six years after, with no fix in sight, the cost for band D Council tax payers has risen to £200. From April it will increase to £252.25.

Commenting, Peter Harris, Chair of Finance on Southwell Town Council, said "This is just a sticking plaster solution. Failure to sort out Social Care means large increases on Council tax are needed just to maintain road repairs and prevent library closures".

Faced with finding a huge multi-million pound sum over the next three years to balance the books, as well as taking £30million out of reserves, a further hefty increase in Council tax will be hard to avoid next year.

Local Election Results May 2023

A spectacular set of elections both nationally and locally here in Newark and Sherwood!

Overall Lib Dem gains were 405 nationally, which posed a problem for Sky News, whose swingometer apparently was not able to contemplate a set of gains of this magnitude. We exceeded 'Exceeded Expectations'!

Our local gains at the district level saw the addition of our third District Councillor with the victory of Keith Melton in Trent Ward. We also kept 2 of 3 councillors for Southwell, now Karen Roberts and Peter Harris. We were encouraged to see the increase in our share of votes in other seats where we were able to field candidtes. Congratulations to everyone.

We had a very good performance in Southwell Town Council, gaining 10 of the 14 seats for which there were candidates, with 6 of these won in elections and 4 being uncontested. Two Conservatives, one Labour candidate and one Independent were also successful. One place on the council remains to be appointed to.

The Conservatives had a terrible set of district and parish elections, losing about half of their district councillors and many PCs. The final DC result was Conservative 14, Labour 11, Independents 11 (8 for Independents for Newark and 3 for other Independents) and Lib Dems 3. Discussions will take place for some time on the composition of the new administration, which is unlikely to include Conservatives for the first time since 2007.

On behalf of the executive, we are extremely grateful to everyone who stood as candidates, as well as everyone who performed the various roles which were necessary for the campaigns. We are a small party and many of you worked very hard.

We are very grateful for their past work to councillors who have stood down at this election, including Peter Scorer and Stuart Thompstone. Malcolm Brock has stood down from the District, though continues to serve on Southwell TC.

We welcome new members to the party, who were motivated by this campaign. This phenomenon was particularly marked in Trent Ward. Upton support has to be singled out, evidenced for anyone who drove through, by the huge number of LD stakeboards and posters.

Philip Barron

Chair, Newark Liberal Democrats

7 May 2023

Collingham Focus April 2023
Southwell East Ward Focus April 2023
Southwell North Ward Focus April 2023
Trent Focus April 2023