MP claims council tax revaluation is aiming to plug 'gargantuan' gap in public finances

PUBLISHED: 10:39 24 August 2009 | UPDATED: 09:13 02 June 2010

Malcolm Moss

Malcolm Moss

MALCOLM Moss, MP for North East Cambridgeshire, today demanded that the Government come clean about their plans to increase taxes on family homes. New evidence has emerged that a council tax revaluation is underway across England, he said. Tax bills a

MALCOLM Moss, MP for North East Cambridgeshire, today demanded that the Government come clean about their plans to increase taxes on family homes.

"New evidence has emerged that a council tax revaluation is underway across England," he said.

"Tax bills are set to increase in an attempt to plug the gargantuan gap in the country's public finances created by years of reckless spending and borrowing by the Labour Government."

Mr Moss said leaked Government presentations have revealed how the features of every home across England are currently being recorded, logged, digitised and entered into a new Government database.

"The council tax banding of every home will then be re-calculated, pushing up council tax bills for the targeted homes," he said.

"The features that are being recorded by the inspectors include architectural styles, fascias and even sash windows. 'Value significant codes' are logging and recording features like living in a quiet road; patios; roof terraces; balconies; sea or hill views; near a field or golf course; conservatories; double glazing; and the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, garage spaces and parking spaces in your home."

Mr Moss said a Freedom of Information request has revealed that " tax snoopers" have already recorded 100,000 homes as having a scenic view; 780,000 conservatories - including whether they are single or double glazed or have an adjoining greenhouse; the number of garage spaces of every home; and 5,000 'value significant' patios.

The revaluation is likely to move a significant number of homes up a tax band. He said that moving up a tax band would increase the council tax bill for a typical home in Fenland (band D) from £1,495 to £1,827 - a rise of £332, or 22 per cent a year. The local council would receive less government grant as a result - meaning the tax rise would effectively be pocketed by Whitehall instead of being spent on improving local services.

Mr Moss said: "Gordon Brown's council tax inspectors have been caught red-handed preparing the way for massive tax rises in Fenland after the election to fill the monstrous black hole in the public finances that he himself has created.

"People who rent will be taxed just as heavily as those who own their home. Only Labour would think of taxing people for having double-glazed windows or a patio. I hope Gordon Brown will see sense and scrap these plans immediately.

"Increasing the tax burden for hard-working people in the middle of a recession is a misguided and absurd policy which will only make matters worse. Instead, he should adopt the Conservatives' proposal to freeze council tax for two years.

"Gordon Brown can then put his time to better use by focusing on saving money on cutting bureaucracy and bankers' bonuses instead.


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