Press Release: R4U proposes to reverse Conservative’s Council Tax increases on Uttlesford’s most vulnerable

Tuesday 17th February 2015, Saffron Walden: Residents for Uttlesford (R4U), the local advocacy party for towns and villages, has announced that it supports the proposed UDC District Council Tax cut of 3%. But the party says it doesn’t go far enough, and so it has filed an amendment to reverse the Tories’ removal of Local Council Tax Support for the district’s poorest families.

Cllr John Lodge, R4U Chairman Cllr John Lodge (R4U)
R4U party chair Cllr John Lodge said “We fully support the motion to cut taxes by 3%. UDC is sitting on reserves of £ millions of unused cash, which rightly belongs to residents. It’s our money and should be returned to us.”

John Lodge continued “However it is important for us to support the most vulnerable in society. Last year the current UDC Administration withdrew council tax relief from the poorest families. During our manifesto consultations we received a number of comments; one resident wrote to say ‘we barely exist as it is and struggle to survive; most weeks I’m constantly watching my bills to see what’s left for food.’ We’ve proposed an amendment to the tax cut to have Local Council Tax Support restored for those at risk. It can be fully funded within the existing reserves, and we’re calling for cross-party support.”

On Thursday 26th February the full UDC Council will vote on a motion to cut the district portion of the 2015/16 Council Tax bill by 3%. R4U, who support this motion, has requested an amendment to restore Local Council Tax Support, which provides tax relief to the poorest families.

About Residents for Uttlesford

Residents for Uttlesford (R4U) is the local independent party of north-west Essex towns and villages. Formed in 2014 by a number of residents’ groups, the party believes that on local issues residents should decide, not Westminster parties.

R4U is the fastest growing local political movement in its district. In 2015 it became the second party at Uttlesford District Council (UDC). In 2017 it achieved a further by-election gain with 60% of the vote. In the May 2019 Local Elections R4U gained majority control of UDC winning two-thirds of the seats. The result delivered the biggest loss of seats by any UK Conservative controlled council in the UK in those elections.

R4U’s success has been based on the desire to give local people a voice and implement long range strategic and sustainable plans for their area.

R4U is also the majority party at Saffron Walden Town Council, where under its stewardship the council has rebuilt finances, invested in community assets, and won multiple awards. It is a minority party on Great Dunmow Town Council.

Residents for Uttlesford can be found on the web at www.residents4u.org.

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