Wiltshire Council encourages people to sign-up to pay council tax via direct debit to speed up rebate process
Wiltshire Council is encouraging people to sign up to pay their council tax by direct debit if they haven't already, as this will make it easier and quicker to receive the recently announced Government funded energy rebate.
In February, the Government announced that all households in England whose primary residence is in council tax bands A to D are entitled to a one-off council tax energy rebate payment of £150.
In order to ensure the right people get the payment as soon as possible from April, Wiltshire Council will be using the details of those who are set-up to pay by direct debit so that the rebate money can go straight into those accounts. Paying council tax by direct debit is a safe, simple and quick way to pay.
The council is in the process of establishing how the money will get to those people who aren't set up to pay by direct debit, and more information for those residents and how they can claim it will be available in due course.
The Government also announced that funding will also be provided to local authorities to operate a discretionary fund for households in need who would not otherwise be eligible. This could include, for example, individuals on low incomes who live in properties valued in bands E-H. Wiltshire Council has been allocated around £877,000 for this and, is in the process of developing a system to distribute this money to those eligible and will confirm more details soon.
Council tax bills for 2022/23 will soon be landing on doormats as normal. As the rebates and discretionary funding will be issued to people separately, these won't impact the amount owed and stated on the actual bill. A Government flyer, with more information about the rebate, will be enclosed with people's bills.
Cllr Richard Clewer, Leader of Wiltshire Council, said: "It's our aim to get the rebate money to people as soon as possible from April, but if people who aren't already paying their council tax via direct debit can sign up to do so, that will make the process a lot easier for everyone.
"With the cost of living rising, we recognise how difficult it is for some people at the moment and we'll work really hard to get all the money out promptly.
"Administrating the rebates and discretionary funding is a huge undertaking and we really appreciate people's patience as we work through the best way to do it."
To set up a direct debit, people should visit https://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/benefits-council-tax.
Updates on the rebate and discretionary funding will be posted on the Wiltshire Council website at https://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/council-tax-energy-rebate.