§ Mr. Michael Spicer
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if, in his consideration of the relative weight to be given to people and to property in his replacement of the community charge, (1) he will make it his policy to avoid creating a deterrent to home improvement if rental values are to be used;
(2) he will make it his policy (a) to avoid unfairness due to changes in capital values which are caused by factors extraneous to the property itself and (b) to avoid subjective and variable valuation procedures;
(3) he will make it his policy to identify property values in the taxes paid by tenants of councils and housing associations;
(4) he will make it his policy that (a) residents in areas served by inefficient councils should pay more than those being served by efficient councils, (b) that the principle of local accountability is maintained and (c) that local taxes paid should reflect the services used;
(5) he will make it his policy to distinguish between nominal property values and the ability to pay.
§ Mr. Portillo
My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State announced on 23 April our proposals for the new council tax. The proposal is to place each property in one of the seven bands by value.
There will be no need either for precise valuations or for regular general revaluations. Paragraph 2.30 of the consultation paper explains thatbecause the tax is to be based on broad bands improvements to a property would not necessarily lead to a change in its appropriate band. One option would be to take alterations into account only when a property changed hands".
The highest band property will pay about two and a half times as much as the lowest in an area. Each household will receive a single bill on the assumption that it consists of two people. There will be a 25 per cent. discount for one-adult households. The level of council tax will be higher than the standard level where an authority spends more than is necessary to provide a standard level of service, and lower in more efficient authorities. People on low incomes will receive rebates of up to 100 per cent. of the council tax.