'Wrong' for adult social care to paid for through council tax rise, says Doncaster councillor

The Government needs to get on with a delayed plan to sort out how adult social care is funded in future, a Doncaster councillor has said.

By George Torr, Local Democracy Reporter
Thursday, 13th February 2020, 5:08 pm
Updated Monday, 17th February 2020, 12:32 pm

Councillor Rachael Blake, cabinet member for adult social care, said the council had no choice to put on a two per cent levy on bills to help pay supporting vulnerable adults across the borough and called it ‘wrong’ that residents had to pay for it.

A Government green paper on social care was first mooted in 2017 in order to consult on possible ways to fund it in future and councils across the country await an announcement.

This has left town hall leaders angry that residents are having to foot extra bills in order to meet pressures. The two per cent increase raises around £2.2 million.

“This is the third year running I’ve said the same thing and that’s this Government has not addressed nationally the problem of adult social care,” Coun Blake said.

“We’re not unique in having pressures and a lot of the innovative work we do puts us in a really good position but it’s completely wrong that councils have to levy people for this money.

“We were promised this in 2017 with a Green Paper, we were promised something in the Queen’s Speech and now we’re told we’ll be having the discussion on adult social care at the end of the year.

“Until that point we don’t have a choice to raise the two per cent on bills but it is clear in the budget on how we’re going to use that money working with communities enabling people to stay in their homes as long as they wish to.”

A report says the money raised through the social care levy will contribute towards the social care pressures including inflationary cost increases, investment in the care ladder and growth in the number of clients from projected changes in the population.

The council has to address a budget deficit of £17.7 million over the next three years.

On top of the two per cent adult social care levy, council tax bills will also go up by 1.99 per cent.