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Council Tax Benefit Changes Approved

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2:36pm 29th January 2013

Some of the poorest families in Cornwall will have to pay hundreds of pounds extra council tax.

It is after councillors voted to push ahead with plans to cut benefits. The decision to carry the motion was passed with a majority of 55 votes to 42, with two abstentions.

It came amid a warning that unless benefits were slashed, frontline services in Cornwall would have to be cut.

A £1,000,000 Transitional Relief fund will also be set up to help the worst affected people.

However, 95 percent of people questioned in a Pirate FM poll said councillors should give up a 20 percent pay rise they gave themselves, due in May.

Jim Currie, Leader of Cornwall, voted against that increase. He said: "A substantial part of the council don't like it. It was done, in my view, in haste. In all fairness to the members, they didn't take the money on the sly. They put their hands up for it and had their names recorded, which I found quite amazing."

But Mr Currie added that the total cost of the rise would not help stop the pain: "It's around about £300,000 which as far as individuals are concerend, is alot of money. But it was only half of what was recommended, not that I think that is as significant as some people obviously thought it was."

2:36pm 29th January 2013

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