Council tax demand on flood victims

Basingstoke Gazette: Alan Newland with his wife Louise and their children Matthew, nine, and Shannon, seven Alan Newland with his wife Louise and their children Matthew, nine, and Shannon, seven

A RESIDENT, who was evacuated from his flooded Basingstoke home, has spoken of his dismay after he had to protest about paying council tax on temporary accommodation.

Alan Newland left the three-bedroom home he shares with wife Louise and their children, nine-year-old Matthew and seven-year-old Shannon, in Antrim Close, Buckskin, on February 9.

Sewage water starting to seep into the property and Mr Newland took the immediate decision to evacuate, fearing for the safety of his family.

After contacting his insurers, Mr Newland was told to find temporary accommodation for his family, which will be paid for by the insurance company. They moved into a house in Northbrook Crescent, Rooksdown on February 17.

Mr Newland received council tax credit for his Buckskin home from the council, but the 40-year-old was shocked when he was sent a letter asking him to pay council tax on his temporary accommodation.

The letter from Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council stated that he would need to pay £137 a month in council tax for the temporary accommodation – £32 a month more than for his Buckskin home.

The borough council subsequently backtracked on its decision, and Mr Newland received a letter on Monday to say he would not need to pay council tax for three months.

He said: “We have to write back in three months, and they will review it. How many people are going through the same thing? Yes, they are doing something now, but why does it take all this effort?”

The father-of-two still doesn’t know when the family will be able to return to their home, adding: “We have been told that the property now needs to dry out but nobody knows how long it is going to take. People are saying it could be two or three months before the house is even dry.”

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council chief executive Tony Curtis said: “We understand what flood-affected households are going through, and we are doing everything we can to make things easier at this difficult time.

“We have contacted this resident and assured him that he will not be charged council tax for the time he is forced to live in temporary accommodation.”

Comments (7)

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9:21am Wed 2 Apr 14

JJ38JJ says...

Effort? What effort? There was a mistake, he had to make a phone call, it was corrected and has to write a letter in 3 months to confirm. He didn't hesitate to make a phone call to the Gazette. That wasn't too much effort.
I've had to correct retailers and service providers that they have made mistakes in the past and it didn't cross my mind to go blubbing to the media.
Effort? What effort? There was a mistake, he had to make a phone call, it was corrected and has to write a letter in 3 months to confirm. He didn't hesitate to make a phone call to the Gazette. That wasn't too much effort. I've had to correct retailers and service providers that they have made mistakes in the past and it didn't cross my mind to go blubbing to the media. JJ38JJ
  • Score: 35

12:08pm Wed 2 Apr 14

jonone says...

Summary of story. Man moves out of property for reasons outside of control. Man receives rebate of tax on said property due to those reasons. Man moves into new property at time that annual council tax demands are sent out. Man receives said demand.

About sums this non-story up? Got to wonder what goes through the minds of Gazette editors, no doubt this is this weeks headline story.
Summary of story. Man moves out of property for reasons outside of control. Man receives rebate of tax on said property due to those reasons. Man moves into new property at time that annual council tax demands are sent out. Man receives said demand. About sums this non-story up? Got to wonder what goes through the minds of Gazette editors, no doubt this is this weeks headline story. jonone
  • Score: 12

1:13pm Wed 2 Apr 14

Kimberley50 says...

He had a rebate for the home he cannot occupy so no story there.

It is appalling what people have gone through with the floods but whilst in his tempory home his children will still be at school, his rubbish collected, the emergency services still available etc. is he saying he should not contribute to these beause the move is tempory?
He had a rebate for the home he cannot occupy so no story there. It is appalling what people have gone through with the floods but whilst in his tempory home his children will still be at school, his rubbish collected, the emergency services still available etc. is he saying he should not contribute to these beause the move is tempory? Kimberley50
  • Score: 29

8:20pm Wed 2 Apr 14

hampton house says...

Kimberley50 beat me to it.

The council appear to of gone above and beyond linked to a freak of nature and the first sign of a blip ( and yet it appears not to be a blip) this family have gone squealing to the Gazette.

You can lose sympathies with some individuals when you witness certain actions.
Kimberley50 beat me to it. The council appear to of gone above and beyond linked to a freak of nature and the first sign of a blip ( and yet it appears not to be a blip) this family have gone squealing to the Gazette. You can lose sympathies with some individuals when you witness certain actions. hampton house
  • Score: 20

9:56am Thu 3 Apr 14

JJ38JJ says...

You also have to wonder about his priorities. The impact of the flood on him, his family, their health and his belongings has been considerable. I sympathise and would want to swap places. And yet whilst all this is going on he finds time to contact the media to report a communications error which had already been corrected.
You also have to wonder about his priorities. The impact of the flood on him, his family, their health and his belongings has been considerable. I sympathise and would want to swap places. And yet whilst all this is going on he finds time to contact the media to report a communications error which had already been corrected. JJ38JJ
  • Score: 15

1:18pm Thu 3 Apr 14

robertspet8 says...

jonone wrote:
Summary of story. Man moves out of property for reasons outside of control. Man receives rebate of tax on said property due to those reasons. Man moves into new property at time that annual council tax demands are sent out. Man receives said demand.

About sums this non-story up? Got to wonder what goes through the minds of Gazette editors, no doubt this is this weeks headline story.
To be fair he does wonder how many other people have been affected, so contacting The Gazette is public spirited of him. I do hope he will be taking up all their cases with the council and encouraging all other affected people to contact The Gazette with their personal experiences.
[quote][p][bold]jonone[/bold] wrote: Summary of story. Man moves out of property for reasons outside of control. Man receives rebate of tax on said property due to those reasons. Man moves into new property at time that annual council tax demands are sent out. Man receives said demand. About sums this non-story up? Got to wonder what goes through the minds of Gazette editors, no doubt this is this weeks headline story.[/p][/quote]To be fair he does wonder how many other people have been affected, so contacting The Gazette is public spirited of him. I do hope he will be taking up all their cases with the council and encouraging all other affected people to contact The Gazette with their personal experiences. robertspet8
  • Score: 3

2:10pm Thu 3 Apr 14

jonone says...

It is also the bog-standard local paper "group picture with hard done by expressions on faces" type photo!

Only unusual point is such stories are usually housing association residents, which he doesn't seem to be.
It is also the bog-standard local paper "group picture with hard done by expressions on faces" type photo! Only unusual point is such stories are usually housing association residents, which he doesn't seem to be. jonone
  • Score: 0

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