Thousand say no to tax rise

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CHESTERFIELD Council has made a U-turn over plans to increase council tax after opposition, including a petition signed by more than 1,000 people.

The borough council’s ruling Labour group wanted a rise of 3.5 per cent for the 12 months from April but there will now be a freeze, set to be approved at a meeting today.

The authority has decided to take advantage of government funding on offer to cover the equivalent of a council rise of up to 2.5 per cent.

Chesterfield Council leader Coun John Burrows said: “Overall, people have told us they favour a freeze on council tax as many households are suffering financially.”

North East Derbyshire District Council has also approved a council tax freeze for the second year running.

Council leader Coun Graham Baxter, who represents Dronfield, said they had made saving of more than £700,000 and would aim to make more.