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Council tax benefits changes target working-age households

Council tax benefits are being replaced by the Local Council Tax Support Schemes next year as part of welfare reforms by the government.

This means that from April 2013, local district councils will be able to decide who gets help, rather than decisions being made on a national level.

It is hoped that this scheme will reduce the government’s public spending. Presently £50 million is spent on council tax benefits in Lincolnshire in around 66,000 homes.

However, despite being a local decision, councils need to save £6 million off the sum due to receiving less funding from the government.

At present, pensioners are set to receive the same amount of benefit as they do currently, but the cut could affect working-age households.

There are currently no concrete plans in place deciding on changes to council tax benefits, and residents will be able to have their say on the proposals in the coming months.

The City of Lincoln Council, Boston Borough Council, East Lindsey District Council, North Kesteven District Council, South Holland District Council, South Kesteven District Council and West Lindsey District Council are drafting their schemes for a public consultation on how money will be saved.

Most of the money raised through council tax is passed over to Lincolnshire County Council and also the Police Authority, who will be consulted by each billing authority about their local support scheme.