Should Students pay Council Tax?
Under current regulations, students are exempt from council tax. However, it was reported this week that a Senior Liberal Democrat has proposed to local councils that students should be made to pay council tax.
The Telegraph reported that the talks between Eric Pickles and senior figures concluded that local councils should have more say over who is eligible for a council tax discount or exemption. Students were then mentioned in this statement as one of the groups who receive an exemption.
If this is true then it appears as if the Liberal Democrats are doing everything they possibly can to alienate themselves from the student population. This is the latest Lib Dem scandal after Nick Clegg famously made a U-turn on the student fees system in 2012 (which we reported on in length).
If a policy like this did go through then it could cost many students £1,000 a year simply to cover the cost of council tax (which the Conservatives and Labour party still strongly oppose).
However, there is some confusion over the whole issue with the Lib Dem leader of Portsmouth Council claiming that the comments were taken out of context within the minutes of a meeting.
So, it appears as if this is either a comment taken out of context in a Liberal Democrat meeting or a cover up of a planned policy that has been leaked to the public.
Nick Clegg, the leader of the Liberal Democrat party, is yet to comment on the matter although a spokesperson has said “Neither the Government nor the Liberal Democrats are in favour of ending the student exemption” and that it was simply bought up in a discussion to allow more flexibility to councils.
Would you be able to afford to pay council tax?