Decision details

Council Tax Debt Pilot

Decision Maker: Executive Members for Finance, Performance, Major Projects, Human Rights, Equality and Inclusion

Decision status: Decision Made

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: Yes


Purpose of Report: The report sets out the findings of the council tax debt pilot undertaken across 2022/23 and sets out recommendations to improve the recovery process for residents.

The Executive Member will be asked: To note the findings and approve the recommendations.



Resolved: That approval be given to:

1.   Set up a voluntary non-cost multi-agency debt group including community sector partners – to look in more detail during 2024 at all the issues raised by residents in the debt pilot.

2.   The establishment of non-cost debt surgeries at West Offices following issue of Council Tax (CT) reminders during 2024 – there is little resource for one-to-one support across the city so establishing a surgery with partners may help in dealing with a larger number of residents issues.

3.   To issue text messages to all residents getting CT reminders about continuing to pay something and inviting them to attend a debt surgery.  This is to help prevent residents getting further into arrears through the debt recovery process and provide broader advice and support.

4.   To review the wording on CT reminders and summons and pilot alternative wording to see if there is any beneficial effect. This also responds to and supports recent comments from the Poverty Truth Commission.


Reason:     In order to provide immediate support at the point a resident may fall into debt following good practice early intervention; and to help residents affected by debt and address the broader linked issues within our communities.


Report author: David Walker

Publication date: 19/03/2024

Date of decision: 19/03/2024

Decided at meeting: 19/03/2024 - Executive Members for Finance, Performance, Major Projects, Human Rights, Equality and Inclusion

Effective from: 27/03/2024

Accompanying Documents:


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