Lib Dem Cllr, Michael Stead, (Great Aycliffe Town Council) has submitted a motion calling for the County Council to investigate the unfair Council Tax in County Durham.

Residents in Newton Aycliffe pay on average £241 more council tax than residents in other parts of County Durham.

They pay for their own services and for services elsewhere and then pay again to the Town Council.

This is happening across County Durham.

Cllr Stead was elected with 80% of the vote beating Labour and Independent candidates earlier this year for the Woodham Ward of GATC.

He comments, “People voted for me because this issue was my main campaign pledge. It is against natural justice and fair taxation for us to have to pay for our services and pay again for other areas.”

Areas like Crook, Consett and Chester-le-Street do not have town or parish councils so Durham County Council does everything.

“In places like Shildon, Spennymoor and Newton Aycliffe residents are paying as much as £275 a year more council tax for town councils do the same but they are also paying for other areas to get those services for free from Durham County Council.”

Fellow Lib Dem councillors Dean Ranyard (Spennymoor) and Garry Huntington (Shildon) are also submitting motions to their town councils demanding action. It is expected more will follow.

County Councillor Mark Wilkes submitted a motion to Durham County Council on the issue before lockdown but DCC has yet to hold a full council meeting.

He commented, “Our town and Parish councillors across the County are quite rightly furious that we have such inequality in 2020.

“The only way to change this is to elect more Lib Dem councillors in our County because Labour have failed to fix this injustice for over a decade.”

“If you live in County Durham join us and help us get a fairer tax system across our county.”

Councillor Stead’s motion will he debated on Wednesday 2nd September by Great Aycliffe Town Council.

Photo: Michael Stead on his stunning election night with his Lib Dem colleagues including County Councillor and campaign manager Mark Wilkes and Lib Dem Group Leader Councillor Amanda Hopgood either side of him.