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Kent council tax bills to rise 2.85 per cent

Council taxpayers in Kent face an increase of nearly three per cent on their bills this year.

Kent County Council, which accounts for the largest chunk of the council tax, is proposing an increase of 2.85 per cent to help fund its spending plans for 2009.

The council says the rise represents its lowest increase since the council tax was introduced in 1993.

It will mean an average Band D household will have to pay £1,030 for the KCC share of the tax although overall bills will be higher once district council, police authority and fire authority and parish council precepts are added.

KCC’s ruling Conservative administration says its budget, which includes a package of savings totalling nearly £40million, will safeguard frontline services.

Under KCC’s spending plans, which will have to be agreed at a meeting next month, more money will be spent on the following:

* £4.6m extra for frontline services to protect vulnerable young people.

* £8.7m investment in adult social care.

* An extra £15.9m of highways maintenance.

* £3.8m to extend the Freedom Pass across the county from June, giving free bus travel to 11 to 16-year-olds.

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