SOUTHEND Council is carrying out a review of all households claiming a discount or exemption on their council tax.
The first of the reviews have commenced and will continue until the end of the year.
Sophisticated data matching technology will be used as part of the on-going reviews to validate legitimate claims and identify and remove those being claimed in error or fraudulently.
The Council will check to see whether people are genuinely claiming the reduction by cross-referencing with other sources of information about their household such as, but not limited to, the electoral register and financial sector information.
Coun Andrew Moring said: “We will be contacting all those receiving discounts and exemptions via letter and or telephone and we would urge people to respond quickly or their claims could be withdrawn.
“We would also urge anyone who is claiming a discount or exemption and whose circumstances have changed to contact us immediately by telephoning 01702 215001.
“The longer you leave it, the larger your backdated bill will be, so it makes sense to tell us as soon as possible.”
Any persons failing to respond to these requests for further information about their claim will have either their discount or exemption withdrawn from the beginning of the current financial year or from the date the discount was applied if within the current financial year.
Furthermore, under Schedule 3 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, tax payers will be subject to a penalty notice of £70.00 should they fail to respond, or provide the Council with inaccurate or false information, repeat offences may lead to a penalty of £280.
Join us on Facebook: TheLeighTimes and on Twitter: @TheLeighTimes