CYFARFOD Y CYNGOR

10fed Ionawr 2018

Y PWNC:  Cynllun Gostyngiadau'r Dreth Gyngor, 2018/19

Y Pwrpas:   

Diben yr adroddiad hwn yw gofyn am fabwysiadu’n ffurfiol Gynllun Gostyngiadau’r Dreth Gyngor (a gyflwynwyd yn lle Budd-dal y Dreth Gyngor ym mis Ebrill 2013) am 2018/19.

 

YR ARGYMHELLION / PENDERFYNIADAU ALLWEDDOL SYDD EU HANGEN:

Argymhellir bod y Cyngor yn gwneud fel a ganlyn ar gyfer 2018/19:

1.    Mabwysiadu'n ffurfiol Gynllun safonol Cymru Gyfan ar gyfer Gostyngiadau'r Dreth Gyngor a ddarperir yn

a.    Rheoliadau Cynlluniau Gostyngiadau'r Dreth Gyngor a Gofynion Rhagnodedig (Cymru) 2013, a

b.    Rheoliadau Cynlluniau Gostyngiadau'r Dreth Gyngor (Gofynion Rhagnodedig a'r Cynllun Diofyn) (Cymru) (Diwygio) 2014

 

2.    Gweithredu’r ffigurau uwchraddio blynyddol (a ddefnyddir wrth gyfrifo hawl) a’r mân ddiwygiadau technegol eraill sydd wedi'u cynnwys yn Rheoliadau Cynlluniau Gostyngiadau’r Dreth Gyngor (Gofynion Rhagnodedig a’r Cynllun Diofyn) (Cymru) (Diwygio) 2018 a fydd yn dod i rym ar 10fed Ionawr 2018.

       a hefyd, 

 

3.            Parhau i arfer ei ddisgresiwn o ran elfennau disgresiynol cyfyngedig y cynllun rhagnodedig, fel y'u hamlinellir yn y Crynodeb Gweithredol.

Y RHESYMAU:

 

a)    Mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi llunio rheoliadau sy'n cadw Cynllun Gostyngiadau'r Dreth Gyngor, 2013/14 (gyda diwygiadau cyfyngedig) am 2014/15 a'r blynyddoedd dilynol.

b)      Mae rhwymedigaeth ar awdurdodau i (ail)fabwysiadu cynllun Gostyngiadau'r Dreth Gyngor yn ffurfiol erbyn 31ain Ionawr bob blwyddyn neu bydd y "Cynllun Diofyn" yn weithredol sy'n golygu na fydd y Cyngor yn gallu arfer ei ddisgresiwn o ran yr elfennau disgresiynol cyfyngedig yn y cynllun rhagnodedig.

c)   Os yw'r Cyngor yn dymuno arfer ei bwerau o ran y meysydd disgresiwn cyfyngedig sydd ar gael iddo, mae'n ofynnol iddo wneud hynny fel rhan o'r broses mabwysiadu cynllun ffurfiol.

 

Angen i'r Bwrdd Gweithredol wneud penderfyniad                  Amherthnasol

Angen i’r Cyngor wneud penderfyniad                                         OES     

Y Gyfarwyddiaeth:

Y Gwasanaethau Corfforaethol

Yr Aelod o’r Bwrdd Gweithredol:

Y Cynghorydd David Jenkins

 

Enw Pennaeth y Gwasanaeth:

Helen L Pugh

Awdur yr Adroddiad:

John Gravelle

 

Swyddi:

 

 

 

 

Pennaeth Refeniw a Chydymffurfio Ariannol

Rheolwr y Gwasanaethau Refeniw

Rhifau ffôn / Cyfeiriadau e-bost:

 

 

 

 

HLPugh@sirgar.gov.uk

01267 246223

JGravelle@sirgar.gov.uk

01267 228740

 


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Council – 10th January 2018

 

 

Council Tax Reduction Scheme

 

1.   As part of the Welfare Reforms introduced in recent years the former Council Tax Benefit scheme (CTB) was abolished with effect from April 2013. In its place is a localised Council Tax Reduction (CTR) scheme which in Wales has been devolved to Welsh Government, although with significantly less funding than the cost of the former CTB scheme.

 

2.   The standard scheme introduced by Welsh Government for 2013/14 and (with minor amendments) subsequent years, is a uniform all-Wales scheme, albeit with limited areas of local discretion available to authorities.

 

3.   Despite being an all-Wales scheme, individual Councils are required by the Prescribed Requirements Regulations to formally adopt a Council Tax Reduction Scheme by 31st January each year.

 

4.    The limited areas of local discretion, and the policy adopted by Council in respect of those discretions, are shown below for information. There is no recommendation for change:

 

Discretion:  to disregard part or the whole amount of War Disablement pensions and War Widows Pensions when calculating income.

 

Policy: The Council exercises its discretion and fully disregards War Disablement pensions, War Widows Pensions and analogous payments, when calculating income for the purposes of assessing entitlement to Council Tax Reduction.

 

 Discretion: The ability to increase the standard extended payment period of 4 weeks given to people after they return to work, when they have been in receipt of a relevant qualifying benefit.

 

Policy: The Council does not exercise its discretion in relation to extended payments and therefore continues to adopt the 4 week period within the standard scheme.

 

Discretion: The ability to backdate the application of Council Tax Support awards for working age and/or pension age, customers beyond a standard period of 3 months prior to the claim.

 

Policy: The Council does not exercise its discretion in relation to backdating applications and therefore continues to adopt the 3 month maximum period within the standard scheme.

 

 

5.   Apart from the normal annual up-rating of certain financial figures used for assessing individual entitlement and some technical adjustments (as is being provided for in The Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements and Default Scheme) (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2018) the scheme will be materially unchanged for 2018/19.

 

DETAILED REPORT ATTACHED?

Yes


IMPLICATIONS

 

 

I confirm that other than those implications which have been agreed with the appropriate Directors / Heads of Service and are referred to in detail below, there are no other implications associated with this report :

 

Signed:          C Moore           Director of Corporate Services                                         

 

Policy, Crime & Disorder and Equalities

 

Legal

Finance

ICT

Risk Management Issues

Staffing Implications

Physical Assets 

YES

 

YES

 

YES

 

NONE

 

NONE

 

NONE

NONE

1. Policy, Crime & Disorder and Equalities

 

The Council Tax Reduction scheme retained for 2014/15 and subsequent years will continue to assess claimants’ entitlement on their full Council Tax liability, as happened under the 2013/14 scheme and the former UK-wide Council Tax Benefit scheme.

 

A local equalities impact assessment was undertaken by the Council in anticipation of the original draft 2013/14 scheme which if implemented, would have reduced all claimants’ entitlement. In the event the final 2013/14 scheme was more generous with claimants’ entitlement being based on the full charge as will be the case for subsequent years, unless changed. It has not therefore been considered necessary to undertake a further EIA.

There are no proposed material changes to the scheme other than the normal annual up-rating of the financial figures used to assess applicant’s entitlement, and some technical adjustments. Council has no power to vary these.


2. Legal 

Under the Prescribed Requirements Regulations the Council is obliged to make a Council Tax Reduction Scheme each year. 

The legislation provides for a default scheme to apply in the absence of the Council making a scheme; the Council is nevertheless under a statutory duty to adopt its own scheme, even if it chooses not to apply any of the discretionary elements.

The National Assembly for Wales on the 26th November 2013 approved the Regulations governing the operation of Council Tax Reduction Schemes in Wales for 2014/15 and subsequent years.

 

The Council Tax Reduction Schemes amending Regulations for 2018/19 have been laid and are scheduled for debate and approval by Welsh Government 9th January 2018. They will up-rate figures contained in the main regulations that are used to calculate a claimant’s entitlement to a reduction under a council tax reduction scheme and introduce further technical / procedural amendments. Council has no power to vary these.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


3.  Finance 

The scheme for 2018/19 continues to have financial implications for authorities.

 

The former Council Tax Benefit system was fully funded by the Westminster Government however less funding was given to Welsh Government with regard to the replacement scheme.

 

The initial funding distributed to Councils by Welsh Government has not increased since the new scheme was introduced in 2013/14. Accordingly individual authorities must make up on-going shortfalls due to higher expenditure as a result of any additional caseload and/or higher Council Tax levels.

 

The Council’s proposed budget provision for 2018/19 is £15.826m

 

The additional cost to the Council to continue exercising its discretionary powers and disregarding War Widow and War Disablement Pensions (and other analogous payments) is estimated as £20k.

 

 

CONSULTATIONS

 

 

I confirm that the appropriate consultations have taken in place and the outcomes are as detailed below

 

Signed:       C Moore           Director of Corporate Services                                         

 

 

1.    Scrutiny Committee  - n/a

 

2.    2.Local Member(s)  -  n/a

 

3.    3.Community / Town Council  - n/a

 

4.    4.Relevant Partners 

 

5.    5.Staff Side Representatives and other Organisations

 

6.    As there are no proposed changes to the scheme other than the normal annual up-rating figures over which Council has no jurisdiction, no public consultation exercise has been undertaken. 

 

 

 


 

Section 100D Local Government Act, 1972 – Access to Information

List of Background Papers used in the preparation of this report:

 

THESE ARE DETAILED BELOW    

 

Title of Document

 

File Ref No.

Locations that the papers are available for public inspection

 

The Council Tax Reduction Schemes and Prescribed

Requirements (Wales) Regulations 2013

 

n/a

 

CFP - Council Tax Reduction folder

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/all?title=The%20Council%20Tax%20Reduction%20Schemes%20and%20Prescribed%20Requirements%20%28Wales%29%20Regulations%202013

 

Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements and Default Scheme) (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2014

 

n/a

 

CFP - Council Tax Reduction folder

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/wsi/2014/66/contents/made

 

 

Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements and Default Scheme) (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2018

 

n/a

 

 http://senedd.assembly.wales/ieIssueDetails.aspx?IId=20675&Opt=3

 

[laid before the National Assembly for Wales on 11th  December 2017:]