Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Unemployed to Pay Council Tax.

with 21 comments

Fat Bastard Eric Pickles: Make the Unemployed Pay Council Tax!

People on JSA and other benefits will be paying a percentage of Council Tax by 2013.

Ipswich Borough Council has announced,

Council tax benefit is currently the responsibility of the Government but from 1 April 2013 local authorities are being told to design a Local Council Tax Support Scheme to determine how much discount working age people will receive in the future to help pay their council tax.

In addition, the Government is also reducing the grant made available to pay these benefits by 10% and has stated that pensioners must not be affected by these changes. This means some low-income working age households will have to pay more council tax as the amount of support they receive will be less.

This means that it will be up to local authorities to determine the level of Council Tax Benefit the out-of-work will receive.

In all cases they will end up paying cash.

Ipswich Borough Council is Labour controlled. We understand that they are extremely concerned about this scheme. They have  the intention of keeping the contribution from those on benefits as low as possible (around 3%).

Liberal and Conservative Councils are free to levy far higher rates.

Which they will certainly do.

You could live in a street in one authority and have to fork out much more than somebody across the road in another municipality.

In Suffolk this will mean people on benefits living just next to Ipswich in, say, Suffolk Coastal District, (a Tory stronghold), being taxed more than those inside its boundaries.

Ipswich Borough offer four options:

Option 1: Reducing the discount to those who are not working, but who are of working age and are available to work. This would have the effect of ‘making work pay’, by reducing the amount of benefits available to those who are able to work and increasing the incentive to work.

Option 2: Removing the discount available to owners of second homes.
This would ensure that owners of second homes, who currently only pay 90%, make an equal contribution to the local area.

Option 3: Removing the discount available to owners of empty homes
This would help bring empty properties back into use so that they can be used to house local families.

Option 4: End the second adult rebate.

It is important that people participate in the Consultation Process: Here.

Similar consultations are taking place up and down the country.

The new system will mean:

  • Those with hardly enough money to live on (benefits) having to pay out.
  • Councils spending large sums to collect the Council Tax from those who will it difficult to find the cash.
  • A massive rise in non-payment.

From the Liberal-Conservative Coalition this has the following advantages:

  • Putting an extra burden on Labour authorities, in working class and poor areas, who will find it hard to raise the 10% shortfall (above).
  • Make electors blame their council for having to pay when they didn’t before.
  • Make the lives of the unemployed even more of a misery.

Fat Bastard  Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, and responsible for the measure,  lives on a diet of cream doughnuts, caviar, and dead-babies.

He is well-pleased with this scheme.


21 Responses

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  1. Our Labour council will decrese council tax benifit and blame the government.


    September 7, 2012 at 10:51 am

  2. Hooray for poverty and strife!

    Ghost Whistler

    September 7, 2012 at 12:18 pm

  3. this happened before with the poll tax around 1990,and cost more to collect from people on benefits.

    another madcap tory scheme that at the time brought rioting to the streets.all sounds very familiar.


    September 7, 2012 at 3:49 pm

    • It could also result in people in Ipswich paying, say £50 a year out of their JSA and those in Kesgrave (Tory Suffolk Coastal), which is in reality Ipswich but administratively separate, paying up to £300 a year.

      And, those getting under 25 JSA at £56.25 and over 25 £71.00 will pay the same tax.

      Andrew Coates

      September 7, 2012 at 4:00 pm

  4. What a charming man/beast Eric Pickles is(!) The ultimate Victorian mill owner type. Just the type of person Cameron wants in his cabinet to implement his Workhouse Program; whilst Cameron, Eric, and the rest of the greedy rich just get get richer and fatter on the the back of poor. Love the photo by the way – who took it? Perhaps it was Eric’s East European sex slave(!)

    A. Ellis

    September 8, 2012 at 1:15 am

  5. Just when you thought they weren’t bringing back poll tax…

    Council tax is a strange one. It’s not made clear exactly who does or doesn’t get charged it. Often what actually happens with a specific house is that they do the opposite from what they promised to do, charge it when they said they wouldn’t, or omit to charge it when they had said they would.

    In theory you can get council tax benefit but it isn’t necessarily linked up with council tax. The old forms used to have a claim for housing benefit with council tax benefit, except most people got refused the council tax benefit and not told why. It was from the jobcentre and you had to do a separate pack of forms at the same time, for both benefits, from the council. Joke-centre staff got fed up of people saying ‘what is the point of having to do all four packs of forms, when you know and I know the two packs of forms for council tax benefit will be rejected?’ Then the council did forms for a while; then they supplied separate forms, and now it is a council-only form for housing benefit. They seem strangely reluctant to hand out any forms for council tax benefit.
    A lot of people who don’t pay, aren’t liable to pay, don’t need to pay, council tax, claimed council tax benefit and actually got given it, so they had a bigger income (whether on the dole or other benefits, or not on them). Even counsellors were sending out wrong information for years saying that council tax benefit was universal and easy to get. The government said if you were refused council tax benefit it was because you were not liable for council tax. That wasn’t true, because, then if it was true, if you were liable for the council tax, you should get council tax benefit.
    And this is how you could get no council tax benefit but be charged council tax:

    I had been living in a number of places, and often for a year or less in each one. There was the place I had to leave for being the wrong type of student, and then I moved into a house share with around half a dozen others. I never ‘brought anyone home’, but although the landlord said I was a great tenant, as soon as he found out who I slept with he evicted me. Then I moved into a really basic place, on my own but with no hot water, no bathroom, and a shared outdoor toilet. It was the most privacy but the least facilities. Then heroin addicts broke in and stole most of my stuff. Then the police were rubbish about it, though I found out who did the burglary because they tried fencing my stuff, and the police didn’t go and get them or my stuff. Then because I got burgled, but really actually because of who I slept with, my landlord evicted me. Then I was homeless. After a while I found somewhere and had an interview, I told the new landlord I was homeless and on benefits and a part time student, also a disabled student. I can’t study full time because there is no financial help, because you get your benefits (only income) stopped, and because I’m disabled. He seemed fine with that at the time. I did all the proper enquiries about council tax benefit and amount of housing benefit. The council said I didn’t have to pay council tax, and that I would get all my rent paid by housing benefit. Both these statements turned out to be lies.

    So I signed a year’s contract, and moved in. The first bad thing was that (I was now committed legally to the contract) the council only paid housing benefit for a fraction of my rent, and it took virtually all of my dole to pay the rent and bills, leaving me almost no money for food, course fees (I had to pay all my education costs at that time), and then -even though I was meant to be using the remainder to eat – my housemates (see below) took it all so they could pay THEIR phone bills and THEIR meter bills. To eat I then had to borrow money and my debt got worse.

    The second bad thing was that my room was tiny and vile. There was a weird patch of heat that melted a plastic mirror, and a weird patch of damp that caused my food to be soaking wet and crawling with tiny bugs after only 2 days so I had to throw it all away (I’m veggie).
    There was a sink and during my subsequent incarceration by my housemates it doubled as a toilet.

    The third bad thing was the spoilt, rich brats I got for housemates. (Two were okay, a couple, but they left.) They made nasty jokes and remarks ‘fag spastic’ much of the time. The bullying got worse and worse. They got me fired from a job because they accused me of being ‘into kids’ and of ringing porn, though I got proof they had done the porn lines, they had made the mistake of calling lines while I was ABROAD. They played loud music so my course work suffered. They kept stealing my things and putting them on top shelves. They stole all my food most times I’d just bought it. They called me ugly and said nobody wanted me so I deserved to die. One day I came back to find all my food stolen and replaced with a bottle of bleach and a sign saying ‘drink this faggot’. There was a television lounge and they banned me from it so I couldn’t watch TV. They started saying
    I wasn’t allowed to use the kitchen, then the bathroom. The oldest was in his 40s and won a prize, I won’t say what. He was one of the two worst, the other was a girl. She slapped me in the face twice for no reason. It escalated to the point where they often pushed beds and tables against my door and so I couldn’t get out for days. As well as not being able to eat or go to the toilet, it meant I missed college, appointments, medical
    treatment, getting medicines I needed, meetings, work, the library, seeing friends/partners, and signing on. So I got my dole stopped several times. With the crap damp room I got ill. One day I confronted the bitchy girl who was far younger than me, it shut her up a few days when I said she was such an unpleasant person. Then it got worse, she accused me of giving her a mental illness, and cried a lot, and claimed I had made her suicidal. She said she didn’t like fags and spastics (her term for anybody disabled) so it was my own fault, she said ‘normal’ people like her and the guy in his 40’s should not have to look at deformed stunted freaks. (get rid of your mirror then bitch)
    The housemates told the college I was cheating in my course, this got investigated but dropped as it was BS. I claimed against them over the bullying, but the college didn’t do anything.

    The fourth bad thing was that in the autumn term after struggling putting myself through college and being ill, and everything else, the Jobcentre forced me to drop out of college
    though I was only doing 10 hours a week. The college banned me because of the financial penalty they get for students pulling out. I had appeals in motion with the college and the Jobcentre. The Jobcentre then stopped my dole anyway because they said I hadn’t complied! I’d finished half the course and was meant to get 2 A’s. I had no money so borrowed more and got in worse debt.

    The fifth bad thing… All the while, lurking in the background, was the council tax. My tenancy agreement never specifically said I had to pay.
    At the start of the year, I had had a particularly bad day. For the longer term, I hoped to win my appeals and retake college (but I was going to be too old for the degree I wanted to do after it, and every UK university teaching it refused to take me as a disabled non Oxbridge mature student on benefits and they even said I’d give people Aids, tricky as I don’t have HIV.). I’d been doing home study and was also forced to quit that. Enough bad things had been going on all day so I just wanted to get home and rest, then make it to the summer and then do another year or so there because my housemates would graduate and leave.

    I got up to my room, to find several things nailed to my door. One was a CCJ (County Court Judgement). It had found me guilty in my absence and I’d not even been told anything about it, the proceedings were launched by my landlord and the council. In other words totally illegal, but this was the law doing it to me. The charge was refusal to pay the council tax.
    The landlord was the owner but did not live there and did not want to pay it. It was an HMO so all separate households. The council tax is meant to be waived if the only person ‘liable’ is disabled, they refused to say I was disabled (but every time I applied for council jobs they said ‘no you are too disabled’). The housemates, the full time students, were exempt. But as a part time student they said I was therefore 100% liable. Oh read on, dear reader, for it gets worse. They knew I couldn’t be fulltime because I’m on benefits and disabled. My landlord claimed I never said I was on benefits and part time.
    I was charged the council tax for the whole house (I just lived in one poky room and was frequently denied access to any shared rooms), for the whole year (I was there 9 months)
    and for the previous whole year before I moved in and the future year that hadn’t started. Also I was charged 3 years council tax for 2 other properties owned by the landlord I didn’t even know about. So that is 9 years full tax. (3×3) They knew I had no money and suggested bankruptcy (I later refused). There is a grace period and a couple of people gave me the money (£800 fee) that stops it then turning into a full and permanent CCJ. Then both of them used that leverage to blackmail me and force sex.

    Along with the CCJ on my door were several other things. There was an eviction order from my landlord (again, this was the first I heard of it). It said I had to leave ASAP. There were 2 letters from bailiffs I’d never heard of about debts that were nothing to do with me, my housemates had been ‘ordering stuff’. My housemates had all read the documents on my door and were laughing ‘good riddance’. Also there was a demand from the college the Jobcentre made me leave, for a whole year’s fees for leaving the course. And when I stopped shaking hours later, I went to the kitchen to try and eat, but my food was all stolen again – and a note from ‘the bitch’, telling me to hang myself.
    I spent a few months trying to delay the eviction. I used more borrowed money to get a lawyer. Unfortunately I lost, mainly for running out of money. I then got evicted and was
    homeless. (The real reason the landlord wanted to evict me turned out to be, he found out who I slept with, and he said I had been a threat to the girl, who was terrified she’d get AIDS if I was allowed to use kitchens/bathrooms. I went and got an HIV test privately and used it as evidence but they didn’t care I’m Negative.)

    One day while homeless I got invited to a house and somebody I knew lived there, they said it was a vacant room soon. I got accepted by the landlord. No time for much detail now, but I lasted 2 years. Then a stooge tenant assaulted me and as a result (because of who I slept with, but if that was the case the guy who attacked me should have been evicted too) There was the threat of council tax but the landlord said he wouldn’t charge it and the rent was very low. Also it was in another tax category as a commercial building, the landlord was in charge of the tenants but the branch he was boss of were the real owners of the property, or at least the renting party. Someone else owned the LAND. So possibly we got overlooked for tax.

    I was then homeless again. I found my current place. The tenancy agreement says I am potentially liable for council tax, but it hasn’t always said that. It is an HMO. So far I am doing comparatively okay, in relation to my previous homes. I can’t talk about it here.
    I don’t want a repeat.

    Council tax is so unfair. Also the public things like leisure centres, pools, museums, parks,
    galleries, theatres, cinemas… All are being shut down leaving only a few, mostly far away.
    They get rid of public toilets too. They never fix the potholes. The roads often don’t get cleaned. The bin/recycling service is ‘rubbish!’. Social services/meals on wheels seems unreachable. The council are a contact centre from a special phone half an hour’s bus ride away, for a lot of things. There are people with not 2nd but 3rd/4th homes, why don’t they pay more? Or the super rich?

    Sounds like poll tax renamed.

    Obviously there should be services and a budget, and those who can afford it should pay,
    but it should be obvious people on the dole CAN’T pay. It is like going to a lead mine and praying to the lead that it will turn into gold. How more basic do we have to make the point, WE DO NOT HAVE ANY MONEY.

    If you go into hospital for a heart op they do not look at your social class and say ‘you are poor so we will only do 10% of your operation because you DIDN’T PAY IN enough to the system.’

    something survived...

    September 8, 2012 at 7:30 am

    • AS you say Something, one of the major problems is when your situation changes, when you’re in a crisis, and all thr rest that happens when you’re on the dole, get a short-term job and so on.

      This change will cost the councils a lot of time and money, apart from the difficulties it’ll cause for us.

      Andrew Coates

      September 8, 2012 at 11:20 am

  6. Figures released yesterday revealed that one in seven households in Ipswich has nobody working in them, a 50% rise on 2009. Ipswich Spy’s research has determined that some 13,000 Ipswich households had nobody working in them in 2011. A further 20,000 households are mixed, with at least one person not working.

    Not every household will be unemployed, since workless households include those who have taken early retirement, those who are sick, students and those who choose not to work because they are looking after families. Since the numbers in these categories are unlikely to have changed significantly over the last few years, it shows the damage that unemployment is having.

    David Ellesmere, Labour’s Parliamentary candidate, told Ipswich Spy: “These figures show in stark terms the cost of the Government’s mishandling of the economy: thousands more families struggling to get by, worrying how they are going to pay their bills and put food on the table. They also give lie to the claims that everyone on benefits is ‘idle’. There hasn’t been a 50% jump since 2009 of people in Ipswich who can’t be bothered to work. They want to work, but the jobs aren’t there.”

    Reports Ipswich Spy http://ipswichspy.wordpress.com/2012/09/07/shock-as-figures-show-1-in-7-households-has-nobody-working/,

    Andrew Coates

    September 9, 2012 at 10:37 am

  7. New “poll tax” for the poor
    Submitted on 5 September, 2012 – 10:08

    Author: By Andrew Fisher, (joint secretary, Labour Representation Committee)
    Welfare cuts are at the centre of the coalition government’s agenda. Just a month after being elected the Chancellor George Osborne, in his Emergency Budget, announced £18 billion cuts to Britain’s welfare budget.

    That has now expanded to over £30 billion, with the latest £10.5 billion yet to be specified.

    The main themes will be familiar: workfare for the unemployed, work capability assessments for the disabled and cuts, caps and freezes to benefits and tax credits.

    But many people are only just waking up to the next attack as the government announces a 10% cut to Council Tax Benefit, to be administered by local councils.

    Currently every council in the country is consulting on who should continue to get council tax benefit – that is, exemption from council tax.

    Pensioners are statutorily protected, but the disabled on employment and support allowance or disability living allowance, single parents with children under five, students and the unemployed could all now pay some council tax.

    In my local area, Croydon Council proposes to protect the disabled and single parents, but those on Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) will be subject to an effective 5% weekly tax — paying £3.50 out of their £71 JSA. For the rising number of youth unemployed, this represents an even greater proportion of their allowance, which is just £56 per week. The same rate will apply to students, just as they are hit with the first year of £9,000 fees.

    Unlike council tax this will not be a household tax on student or unemployed households, but a poll tax on individual students and unemployed people.

    Consultations are happening in every council area, so your first step is to find out what your council is proposing. Then start organising locally against the proposals – building links between student unions, local disability groups, unemployed workers’ centres or Unite community branches, and other activist groups.

    We have to make sure we are not divided — sacrificing the disabled to exempt students or the unemployed for single parents — and work together to lobby local councils and councillors.

    We have until 1 April 2013 until this new locally set “Council Tax Support” replaces council tax benefit. I know of only one council that is currently proposing to use its reserves to maintain full exemptions — but even they admit that can only stave off the inevitable for a year or two.

    Aside from the electoral implications, if councils raise council tax overall to compensate they will lose the grant they got from the government to freeze the tax. And the other alternative would be further cuts in local services. There really is little room to manoeuvre.

    We need to work with councils and councillors to lobby government and force them to withdraw this new welfare attack.



    September 9, 2012 at 11:12 am

  8. With the 10% of benefits being payable towards rent after one year if your claiming housing benefit while claiming JSA and now having to pay 5% council tax …this will drive many further into debt or worse living on the streets …particularly single unemployed people of all ages living alone. What a civilized country we live in….. IDS you are a scum bag.


    September 11, 2012 at 1:51 pm

  9. This is what IDS wants, everyone off benefits, even if that means they will be out on the streets, in reality he doesn’t care, he see’s people on benefits as scum, even if they are disabled on DLA he wants them working, IDS I really hope you find yourself in a position where you have to sign on, so you can experience for yourself the shitty, inept system you have created, You pathetic piece of filth.

    Obi Wan Kenobi

    September 22, 2012 at 9:24 am

  10. Yeh totally agree with the last comment, put him on bennifits and see how he likes it. There not on the same planet,

    peter cottrell

    October 11, 2012 at 3:27 pm

  11. umm, im a single unemployed man
    I have no money to spare

    if they take it from me, I won’t be able to pay my other bills.

    I’ll get majorly in debt and probably end up dead young from a stress related heart disorder.

    There are not enough jobs to go around and we aren’t all cut throats.



    December 15, 2012 at 10:47 am

  12. IDS will have to look over his shoulder I will find this scumbag private residence and pop a bullet through his fuckin head it’ll be worth the stint in the nick.

    Craig Tomkinson

    December 29, 2012 at 6:43 pm

  13. ….And that fat bastard Eric Pickles they wont be ministers for ever. The Tories give that bitch the Queen a rise then tax the low paid time for Revolution and to take these scumbags out from the bottom- Up.

    Craig Tomkinson

    December 29, 2012 at 6:50 pm

  14. fuckin NAZI GERMANY !!!!! fuck england


    January 8, 2013 at 2:59 pm

  15. Why don’t people stop whining about jobs and just start their own business. It costs nothing. Less moaning on sites like this and more going out there with a bucket and sponge and washing cars for a fiver.


    January 9, 2013 at 2:31 am

    • You guys are up in arms about UJM being hosted by a webserver in Utah USA. Have you not got it yet. The web host of this site is http://WWW.WORDPRESS.COM Most dot com sites and dot net sites are hosted in the USA. WORDPRESS is one of them (DERRRRR)

      mr angry

      January 9, 2013 at 8:38 am

      • any info posted here is done so voluntarily. NOT SO with UJ.



        January 9, 2013 at 9:17 am

      • Yeah, all your data is stored on a giant server running in a DUMB (Deep Underground Military Base) hidden in the top secret Area 51 locale in the good ol’ US of A. All of your comments and personal information is trawled and mined by the 3 letter security agencies. You are being tracked, traced and categorised by the spooks. And yet you whine about UJM! As our Aussie friends say: get real!! 🙂

        Uncle Sam

        May 14, 2013 at 10:51 am

  16. […] little later than Ipswich Unemployed Action (our first major post on this was in September last year) , the BBC reports today on the new Poll […]

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