COUNCIL tax bills in West Berkshire will likely rise by 3.99 per cent in April, the maximum amount allowed without a referendum.

That includes a 1.99 per cent increase in council tax and a two per cent increase in the adult social care precept.

People living in a band D property will have to pay an extra £60 each year, bringing the monthly charge to £130.44.

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The tax increase will raise £4.2 million for West Berkshire Council to spend on local public services.

Councillor Ross Mackinnon (Con, Bradfield), lead for finance, said: “With inflation rising about two per cent, that’s a real-terms freeze in council tax. 

“Although I know residents don’t always see it that way.” 

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Council tax could soon see smaller increases in West Berkshire, as Cllr Mackinnon hinted he would prefer lower taxes, at a budget briefing on February 4. 

He said this year’s increase “does not necessarily set the scene for future years”. 

Across England, 97 per cent of councils are planning to increase council tax in April, according to the Local Government Information Unit.

In West Berkshire, the council tax rise comes as part of the revenue budget for the next financial year. The revenue budget accounts for everyday spending on public services. 

On March 3, councillors will vote whether to approve the council tax increase and revenue budget, at a public meeting of the full council.

They will also vote on the capital budget, which sets out future investment in infrastructure. 

In total, the council plans to raise £102 million from council tax and the adult social care precept over the next financial year. 

Other funding will come from £22.6 million of business rates, £9 million money from central government to spend on social care, and £2 million of other grant funding.