HOUSEHOLDS in Marazion will see a significant rise in their council tax bills after the town council agreed to double its precept.
Marazion Town Council voted to increase its precept from £7,500 to £15,000 for the year 2014-15 to safeguard the reopening of public toilets in the town.
Mayor Derek Laity said the huge increase was necessary since the town council had taken on the burden of maintaining services cut by Cornwall Council.
He said: “The closure of these toilets affected many of Marazion’s residents, especially the young and elderly, and the council feels it is important they are reopened. At a well-attended public meeting before Christmas there was strong public support for this, even with the knowledge that it would mean a large percentage rise in the precept.”
The closure of two public conveniences in the town
outraged the local community and prompted more than 2,000 people to sign a petition to have them reopened.
The council has earmarked £6,000 of its budget to reopen the toilets at Marazion Square and is currently working in partnership with St Aubyn Estates and Marazion and District Chamber of Commerce to make this happen by April 2.
For a typical band E property the increase equates to an extra £14.21 a year.
Marazion has historically maintained a very low precept, as the majority of the town council’s income came from various assets.
However, with budget cuts from Cornwall Council, Mr Laity said the low precept and income from assets was insufficient to carry out work which the town council feels would benefit residents and visitors.
“The council is mindful that this is an increase of 100 per cent for its residents to pay but this is offset by the fact that the original precept was so low.
“The council believes residents will understand the need to increase the precept and appreciate that the money raised will be spent within the town,” said Mr Laity.
Marazion Town Council also voted to take a cut in its own budget which is in place for civic functions.
The hospitality budget for the council will be reduced by 98 per cent, which amounts to more than 10 per cent of the new precept.