Citizens Advice in Ashfield and Ashfield District Council have come together to agree best practice on council tax collection, arrears and debt. This is part of a national campaign by Citizens Advice to have sensible approach to council tax arrears and debt through the council and its collection agencies.
Across the country, local Citizens Advice’ report that since 2013 council tax arrears has become the most common debt issue they deal with. Ashfield is no exception to this and has seen debt to the council outstrip all other forms of debt.
Kathryn Stacey, CEO said "we're really pleased that Ashfield District Council have recognised the value of the agreement. Helping people who are struggling with bill payments can prevent them incurring further charges and alleviate stress, further debt and potentially help reduce collection costs of the council.
We already have a great relationship with the council collection and debt teams; this protocol only enhances this relationship which ultimately helps people in Ashfield who find themselves in financial difficulties."
Cllr Cheryl Butler, Leader of Ashfield District Council says "Signing this protocol shows that Ashfield District Council is committed to supporting residents who may find themselves in Council Tax arrears. We continue to work closely with Ashfield Citizens Advice Bureau to offer support and advice to residents when they most need it.”
Council Tax Protocol makes various recommendations to improve the collection of council tax and arrears. Agreed with the Local Government Association and based on extensive consultation with advice agencies, local government representatives and enforcement agencies
The scheme has already been agreed by Nottingham City Council and Citizens Advice Nottingham & District and other advice agencies for help with their council tax debts.