City Officers Moves To Put The Record Straight

I wonder if it is possible for me to draw your attention to current situation as it relates to collecting Un-Paid Counciltax.

The Express and Star, ran this story on Monday. The Express and Star said that  “Almost £5 million in council tax went uncollected across Wolverhampton last year while a further £1.5 million in business rates was also unpaid.”

Today the City Councils Managing Director moved to set the record straight in a briefing for Councillors.

The Managing Director Keith Ireland said – “On Monday, the Express & Star inaccurately reported that the amount of unpaid Council tax in the City has rocketed from £324,000 in 2009/2010 to almost £5 million in 2016/2017.

It seems that the paper has misinterpreted some figures it found on our website.

The figures the paper based this story on showed the amount of unpaid council tax that was still outstanding from each year going back over the past 8 years. At the end of 2009/2010 we were owed £3.48 million – which now stands at £324,000. Likewise, at the end of 2016/2017 we were owed £7.57 million and that now stands at £4.9 million and will continue to reduce as we successfully recover the debt.

Unlike the 1425% increase in non-payment wrongly reported earlier this week, the actual increase in non-payment over the past 8 years is around 3%.

It can often take years to recover unpaid debt – but we don’t give up, we work tirelessly for as long as it takes within the parameters of the law to ensure people pay what they owe. Likewise, we also take a responsible approach which wherever possible does not add to a person’s financial difficulties.”

Councillor Phil Bateman added. Its important that residents recognise that these debts do get chased, and the MD reminds City Councillors that the City will continue to try and recover debts owed for a  long time after the current year closes. Wolverhampton will do all within the law to recover payments from defaulters.

Phil Bateman

Phil Bateman is Married to Mary and lives in Wednesfield North. He was a long serving local politician having served previously on the now defunct West Midlands County Council... read more