Page last updated at 10:38 GMT, Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Police pay 380k to reissue bills

Lincolnshire's police authority will have to pay more than 380,000 after being ordered to reissue council tax bills, it has been revealed.

The authority wanted to increase its share of the council tax by 79% and instructed councils to send out bills for the amended amount.

But the government capped the rise at 26% and told the police authority it should pay for the re-billing.

Seven district councils have had to recalculate, reprint and resend bills.

Richard Micklewhite from Boston Borough Council, which had to pay out more than 93,000, said: "The council had calculated the cost of rebilling and the Lincolnshire police authority were aware that they would need to pick up the substantial cost before they made their decision.

It does seem a lot of money but the bottom line is Lincolnshire is still the lowest-funded police authority in the country
Colin Davie, East Lindsey District Council

"The council's software needed to be updated and we had no choice but to pass on the costs to the police authority. The software needed to be rewritten to cope with the cancelling and reissuing during the year."

Richard Wyles from South Kesteven District Council added: "We have agreed a figure to recompense us for the rebilling process and we are expecting this payment to be made to us by the end of the financial year."

Colin Davie, an executive councillor with East Lindsey, said the council had had to reissue 71,000 bills at a cost of 114,000.

"It does seem a lot of money but the bottom line is Lincolnshire is still the lowest-funded police authority in the country.

"We mustn't lose sight of the key message: Lincolnshire Police need to be properly funded by central government to deliver the service all of us want them to deliver. And that comes at a price."

Council tax gathered from householders is shared between a number of bodies, including the police and fire service as well as the local council.

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SEE ALSO
Police authority defends actions
03 Jul 08 |  Lincolnshire
MP wants police authority to go
02 Jul 08 |  Lincolnshire
Long wait for council tax bills
27 Jun 08 |  Lincolnshire
Police to explain tax increases
16 Mar 08 |  Lincolnshire
Residents to pay extra for police
27 Feb 08 |  Lincolnshire
Police face 7m budget shortfall
01 Oct 07 |  Lincolnshire

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