Precept 'too high'

PUBLISHED: 09:22 19 March 2008 | UPDATED: 21:37 15 June 2010

HONITON Town Council's precept for 2008/09 is too high and goes against what residents were promised when the structure of local government was re-organised in 1974.

HONITON Town Council's precept for 2008/09 is too high and goes against what residents were promised when the structure of local government was re-organised in 1974.That's what Honitonian and local historian Dennis Cooper told councillors at the annual town meeting on Monday night."I am concerned about the rise in rates. Your precept is up to £100,000."When local government was reorganised, we were told that the town council precept would be very, very low and that the work would be done by East Devon District Council."It appears to me that the more you put your precept up the less EDDC is going to put in. Therefore, we are paying twice."Councillor Vernon Whitlock, the mayor, and Councillor Sharon Holloway, chairman of the town council's policy committee, explained Honiton's precept was among the lowest in East Devon.They said the council was consulting with local residents and that it had difficult choices to make at a time when the district is withdrawing funding for services, such as the Tourist Information Centre.Households in Honiton pay £26 per year for town council services as part of the overall council tax bill.Mr Cooper replied: "When you add it to everything else, it's quite a lot."Town and district councillor Vivienne Ash said EDDC is being squeezed by central government.The annual meeting was attended by 12 councillors and 13 members of the public.

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