Author Topic: Council tax  (Read 35666 times)

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Offline jet

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Council tax
« on: March 20, 2002, 10:00:47 pm »
Well thought I would get in first.
What are we getting for our money, less police?
Now I know why why bins got fully emptied and the lids both put back on! I thought it was Christmas.
Seriously we pay top money and get virtually nothing.
Potters bar get paving slabs, we get poor tarmac on no foundation with built in added weed seeds.
What do we do, nothing, or just grumble like me.
With no residents association, no chance.
Strange that the poshest houses have the cr*pi*st verges and " pavements" outside ussually caused by their own builders etc.
I don't expect any follow up because really there is nothing more to add!
regards
jet alias Mr  Victor Meldrew  :-[
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2002, 12:37:32 am »
STOP PRESS
I must be a bit slow?
Retarmac the "pavements" in the village at the end of the financial year to use up the budget.
Thus ensuring the neccesity for a higher charge next year.
God forbid that they do what we mortals have to do, save it and spend it prudently.
What a system where there is no reward for sensible budgeting.
What would you rather have, same cost as last year but tarmac replaced in ten days time, or pay more and still get same result?
What a bunch of mugs we all are!
Any councillor care to comment, go on someone try to baffle me with bull!
regards
jet
 

John_fraser

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2002, 03:44:00 pm »
Council tax is that it always above inflation, but the fault is more the governmentís than the councilís. The Government set 75% of the income of the council, the remaining 25% being the tax we pay. For every 1% the government underestimates the councilís requirements the council tax goes up 4%. So if the government says the council needs 1% more and the council decides it needs 2%, the council tax goes up 5% - 2% for the council tax + 3% to cover the difference on the rest.

Sadly all governments of at least the last 20 years have been doing a con trick. They keep income tax levels down by allowing councils to raise local tax rates.  Itís a stealth tax used by Blair, Major and Thatcher.
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2002, 06:39:44 pm »
Dear John,
Thanks, all you have told me is explained in the rates bill, although I doubt if many people can understand it.
It does not explain why the bill has gone up so much.
The police tell us we are getting a halved service?
In industry costs are going up,(fuel tax, rates, transport)
But industry prices are going down.
In the government our taxes go up but our services go down!
It can't carry on.
As a quallified proffesional engineer with 33 years experience I would love to get a teachers or policemans salary with their paid holiday, sick pay,pensions etc.
My pay is less than it was in the 80s, if I ask for more I don't get any work, yet in industry the wealth is created.
It all seems sureal and upside down to me!
regards,
jet
 

CC

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2002, 02:31:04 pm »
 :( Four years ago when we lived in Potters Bar, Hertsmere Council charged less council tax than Welwyn & Hatfield Council, whilst providing better services, such as wheelie bins and black bin bags!
 

Offline anna

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2002, 03:08:52 pm »
I have an interesting slant to add to this and wondered what other people think! Our rate bill was very expensive, and I did wonder how they can justify a lot of this when we live in a private road and have to do all our own road repairs, do our own verges and even pay for the gritter truck etc......however, I was even more amazed when on Tuesday night a tree came down in our road, hitting another car, (thank god, no one hurt!) the tree blocked the road, and caused havoc. Two very friendly police came round and tried to help us all out, but were shocked to find that the council would not come and remove the tree as it was an "adopted road" even though its a public highway!!!! They didn't care it was blocking the road or causing a major danger risk. I wonder what would have happened if we just choose to leave it there, and the school coaches hadn't been able to get through??? We had to find someone willing to come out at 8.30 on a rainy evening which was no easy task and had to pay to get the tree moved, as an emergancy call out. THe police were disgusted, and I have to ask that if we are paying such expensive rates, should we at least not be getting some of the services? †If the council are not willing to come out in a situation like this, when why should it be a public highway. SOunds to me like they have the best of both worlds. †I should also add this tree was knocked down by a car, using the public highway!
« Last Edit: March 22, 2002, 03:23:10 pm by admin »
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2002, 05:56:23 pm »
Dear Anna,
Thats what the insurance which the private road fund should have is for, although I imagine that it would put premiums up.
The law is that if someone causes someone a damage then they pay for that damage, in other words the car drivers insurance company pays.
We had this same problem in Calder Avenue years ago when the council built the "estate" at the end of our road and forced us to allow the to use our private road as access without paying us for wear and tear. Some of the other residents do contribute to our fund when we ask.
The "exclusive" private road becomes more of a burden than an advantage, wellcome to the con.
The council no longer grits our road, so at least we don't have to pay for the handfull of grit which used to be deposited on our front gardens any more.
regards,
jet cynical as ever but with reason.
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2002, 07:18:07 pm »
Sorry Anna,
got it wrong tree hit car!
Must learn to read!
regards,
jet
loved the bit about the coach!
 

John_fraser

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2002, 07:37:39 pm »
Correct me if I'm wrong - don't think Jet will need the invitation :-) Ė but rates were in part linked to the services along your road, but Council Tax is not. Therefore the council has no incentive to adopt roads as they will gain no extra revenue but will have extra costs.
 

Offline anna

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2002, 08:06:29 pm »
I actually wouldn't have minded if the Council had charged us afterwards for the tree to be removed, because rightly so, we will claim our costs back from the van drivers insurance. It was more the point they were not willing to come out and clear a public highway in the case of an emergency! Believe it or not there are very few companies willing to come out, so the tree was there for over 2 hours blocking a public highway, on the same day as there was a PTA at Chancellors, which of course meant a huge amount of traffic! I just felt the council could have come out and dealt with costs at a later date. Anyway, sorry I have gone off the subject of tax...........I've had my moan and feel much better for it.....thanks for listening.
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #10 on: March 23, 2002, 12:02:50 am »
Without needing the invitation. Correct. However in the instance of Calder Avenue. The road is owned by the Calder Family in Canada, they don't want it but can't give it away. We don't want it either but maintain it because we live here.
I am astounded that the council do not charge us extra!
Oops thats given them ideas.
Would it not be nice if a councillor posted on the site?
regards,
jet.
P.S. John glad you put the smiley in as it is so easy to missinterpret the written word!
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2002, 01:17:27 pm »
To do with council tax but in a round about way ???
Its polling day :o
If you are not happy then exercise your perogative and vote.
If you don't like anyone spoil your paper.
People went to jail and even got sent to Australia to win the right for votes for all :'(
Use it or loose it ;)
regards,
jet
 

Offline Birch

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #12 on: May 02, 2002, 02:26:00 pm »
You know I would vote and I REALLY believe voting is important, however, ever since moving to WG I haven't a clue who the parties are and what they intend to do in the area.  So much for canvassing and involving the voter.

I did get a leaflet from the Tories who said they would improve health, education etc etc, but how is it going to be funded - they left that one out.

So as I don't know anything about anyone, I'm not going to vote tonight  :(  Can anyone enlighten me?

Birch
 

Offline Editor

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2002, 03:15:53 pm »
I can't remember seeing any campaign leaflets on our doorstep either. I have just been along to vote and the candidates for the Brookmans Park and Little Heath ward of Welwyn District Council are:
John William Dean (C) - address...Newgate Street
Catherine Gerran Edwards (LD) - address...Kentish Lane
Derek Marcus (L) - address...Little Heath
But there is nothing in the voting booth to tell you about any of them and if you ask for info you get strange looks. There is a fairly comprehensive guide on the local elections in the Guardian and BBC News Online has a Q&A but no detail about individual candidates. The newspapers and broadcasters are probably playing it safe because of the RPA (The Representation of the People Act) but it shouldn't prevent them naming the candidates.
I couldn't find any more information on either the Welwyn Hatfield site or Herts Direct.
The Labour Party has a page about Welwyn Hatfield but I could find no mention of the candidates for the local election. The Conservative's site has a rundown on the individual councils and the Liberal Democrats have very little on the local elections except for http://[u]a page of quotes[/u] from the party leadership.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2002, 09:13:27 pm by admin »
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Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2002, 03:57:56 pm »
The lack of canvassing info is sad
If you are interested in local government then unfourtunately you have to make yourself aware.
Nothing is going to change? ( prediction) no matter who gets in (cynical).
The whole affair gets to be a complete turn off for the voter, which is exactly what the council wants. A council run by people who the majority did not want in power.
At least a spoilt vote shows what you think of them all.
I am in no way suggesting that any councillor is not best intentioned etc, but they can't help if people don't tell them what they want.
See who is at the door, speak to them, ask them who they are, give them an opinion.
Consider voting for who ever is bothered to be there or whoever gives the best answer?
Do not confuse, this is local government, nothing to do with Westminister.
See You there?
regards,
jet
P.S. got a leaflet from the Tory chap and he seemed in tune with the things which have been said on our forum.
If he gets in lets ensure NMORA make him keep his promise?
« Last Edit: May 02, 2002, 04:01:42 pm by jet »
 

Offline anna

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #15 on: May 02, 2002, 04:11:38 pm »
I got a leaflet though from the conservatives. But only got it yesterday. It is amazing how little I've heard about it. In fact it was only getting the leaflet that reminded me that it was polling day today!  Quick run down on what it says. They want to clean up the area, making it a place your proud to live in. Didn't seem to mention anything about recycling though? Next point, dedicated to good housing Provision, but want to protect the green belt.  Next point Leisure, to provide better leisure facilities that can be used by all residents, more play areas for children, a swimming pool in WGC. To scrap Labour's plans to spend £1.5m on a new council chamber and spend it on other worthy projects that will benefit all.  Last point, a budget that won't bankrupt us.

Nothing really very interesting, doesn't explain how they will achieve these goals, doesn't talk about education, or Health in the area...........but to be fair, at least they actually bothered delivering something.....more than I can say for the others.......but even so, I just get the impression it was thrown together in a bit of a rush.

I hope people do still vote though............it only takes a few minutes, and you can see what recently happened in France when people couldn't be bothered. Everyone thinks it doesn't matter if they don't vote, but what if everyone thinks like that..........either way, you'd never have the right to moan then when you didn't like who did get voted in!
 

Offline Editor

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #16 on: May 02, 2002, 07:48:05 pm »
Just discovered that the Welwyn Hatfield Times has a few details about the three candidates for the Brookmans Park and Little Heath ward for those wanting to know a little bit more.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2002, 07:49:08 pm by admin »
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Re: Council tax
« Reply #17 on: May 03, 2002, 09:16:57 am »
BBC News Online's local government coverage reports that the Conservatives now have a four-seat majority on Welwyn Hatfield District Council. BBC 'Three Counties' reports that John Dean held the Brookmans Park and Little Heath ward click here. The Welwyn Hatfield site has this page with details of the three councillors for Brookmans Park and Little Heath.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2002, 10:28:06 am by admin »
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Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #18 on: November 01, 2002, 12:53:24 pm »
The latest edition of Herts Direct has arrived and inside is a very subtle questionaire which is the latest example of a typical local government PR excersise.
It lists a number of issues relating to the cost of council taxes against carefully selected ( for maximum ahhh value) services.
Of course it is a pointless costly no win situation.
If no one comments they will say everyone will agree with whatever they decide.
If people ask for improvements or sustaining the existing levels of service then people are in effect saying put my bill up.
If people say cut the services, well of course the cost will stay the same ( or rise slightly less) and services will reduce.
I wonder which graduate thought this one up, you can fool all the people etc. comes to mind.
The real insult is the prize for filling the form in and confirming your address, which can be forewarded to the " leaving the lids of your bins dept" :)
Any of our 190 members care to comment?
regards,
jet
All this of course creates a nice fee for the selected poll group with their statistician and pie chart merchants.
The by product being the next ready made feature in Herts Direct.
 

Offline anna

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #19 on: November 01, 2002, 04:17:37 pm »
I also wonder who is going to foot the bill for the work on the A1000, it is obvious something has gone very wrong. They are re-doing work they have only just finished and it's going on much, much longer that expected.  They are going to have to cover the costs somehow, cause I'm pretty sure this must have gone over budjet
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #20 on: November 01, 2002, 05:02:14 pm »
well it does not take a lot of guessing does it!
Regarding the tree cut down and left blocking half the road between BP and Newgatestreet. On the open side cars tore through the gap, on the obstructed side it was impossible to see around and if the road was clear, everyone just took a chance. Still there yesterday, what a **** poor attempt >:( >:(
regards,
jet
 

Offline Alfred the Great

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2002, 10:02:18 pm »
Well done Jet, you've said exactly what I always think when the council (either WHDC or HCC) ask what we want to see happen. Funny that they never ask us if we would like them to be more efficient and thus reduce the council tax. And it's funny that they think that if they "keep us informed" we will be nice quiet docile subjects and keep paying without complaint - have you noticed the amount of leaflet-ry you can get from HCC, all printed on nice thick shiny paper - makes them look important I suppose.

And speaking of the A1000 road works, we live just near the lights and it's amazing to see the workers stopping at 4.30 regular as clockwork, damn all the motorists, don't work at weekends to clear it up. We had the police there yesterday to quell the near riot that was building up from irate drivers. And yesterday for the third week in a row the dustbinmen couldn't be bothered to stop (might hurt their poor legs having to carry the bags a few extra yards). The postie can do it, so why can't they?

Grrrrrrrrrrrr.............

ATG
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John_fraser

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #22 on: November 02, 2002, 07:22:43 pm »
If I remember correctly the previous set of work on the A1000 was carried out by a water company, not the council. I donít see why the council is being blamed for the current work, as no-one seems to know whoís doing it or what itís for.

Quote
If people ask for improvements or sustaining the existing levels of service then people are in effect saying put my bill up.
If people say cut the services, well of course the cost will stay the same ( or rise slightly less) and services will reduce.


Fact of life Iím afraid. If you want services you have to pay for them. Low taxes and good services are not going to happen Ė although the converse can.

So can we conclude from this thread that the council is wrong to ask, or that whatever they do we will complain about?
 

Tony_Collis

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #23 on: November 04, 2002, 11:44:35 am »
One thing that I find worrying with the current road works is that the Anti-Skid surface has not been replaced where the works have been carried out.

I was wondering what would happen if a car tried to stop in an emergency with two wheels on the anti-skid surface and the other two on the normal tarmac surface?

Would the missing anti-skid surface cause problems to a car in this situation?

If so, do the council or the contractor have any plans to repair the damaged areas of the anti-skid surface?

Regards

TC
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #24 on: November 04, 2002, 01:23:46 pm »
The only time one should need an emergency stop is on ones driving test :) :) :) :) :) :)
What a shambles the whole thing has been, nothing new then >:(
By the way I have noticed that cars seem to be travelling closer and faster just recently >:(
It would be a good idea, when conditions are safe of course, for drivers to see just how long it takes to stop, especially if its a bit wet. I think a lot of drivers would be surprised how far they slide and how long it takes particularly with abs.
Obey the limits and there is reduced risk with a much calmer arrival at ones destination,
Mini rant over,
regards,
jet
 

Sparkie

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #25 on: November 04, 2002, 01:46:10 pm »
TC, you have a very good point. †;)


I was wondering what would happen if a car tried to stop in an emergency with two wheels on the anti-skid surface and the other two on the normal tarmac surface?


I think: †The car would spin out of control as the wheels on the Anti-Skid Surface would not slide anywhere near as much at the wheels on the tarmac surface.

>:(:o :(>:(??? :'( >:(:o :(>:(??? :'( >:(:o :(>:(??? :'( >:(:o :(>:(??? :'(

Jet

Maybe you would like to pop out tonight and test it for us? ;D and let us know the result.

Regards

Sparkie

« Last Edit: November 04, 2002, 02:27:11 pm by Sparkie »
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #26 on: November 04, 2002, 02:29:14 pm »
Seeing as most of the vehicles around here are of the urban assault type it should be okay :) :) :) :)
At the risk of sounding like our PM I refer to my previous statement, that if one drives correctly there will be no problem.
To spin a car takes a deliberate ( but possibly unplanned)  input from the driver, skidding is a different matter 8) 8)
So the road is blocked by roadworks and we all bitch, as soon as its clear we all speed :o
Regards,
jet
 

Sparkie

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #27 on: November 04, 2002, 02:55:15 pm »
Surely, Skidding with one side of the vehicle moving at a faster rate, is a Spin? †:P

Kindest regards

Sparkie
« Last Edit: November 04, 2002, 02:56:42 pm by Sparkie »
 

Offline jet

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #28 on: November 04, 2002, 05:49:29 pm »
I thought it was a skid, I thought a spin was turning right around competely, and yes I have done it on oil at less than 20 mph :o :o :o :o :o
regards,
jet,
Surely we do not want  to get into the realms of the charactaristics of 4wd, differentials, fwd, rwd etc ???
and if you stick your tongue out at me I will cut it off :o
 

Offline Swan

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Re: Council tax
« Reply #29 on: November 05, 2002, 11:51:56 am »
Jet

Perhaps this is a fine opportunity to make use of the Door-to-door "Tarmac your drive sirÖĒ gentleman as mentioned in the crime thread, as they always seem to have surplus time and tarmac
and very reasonable rates apparently

;D
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