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Council Tax Changes Puts Families Hundreds of Pounds Worse Off

Tuesday October 23 2012

CHANGES to council tax benefits is expected to affect more than 12,000 in Barnsley - with many being forced to folk out hundreds of pounds extra.

Council leader Steve Houghton has warned that the changes to council tax by Central Government  will mean that thousands of claimants in Barnsley could lose up to 25 per cent of their council tax benefit.

He added: "For examply, a couple with children in a Band B property receiving Income Support will currently receive council tax benefit of £1089 a year or £20.89 per week. So they pay effectively nothing at the moment.

''With a 22 per cent reduction they will qualify for £849 a year or £16.30 per week. From nothing they will have to pay £239 a year or £4.59 a week.

''We think there is going to be a lot of hardship cases but there will be a social fund and people will have to bid for it so it will pit the poor against the poor. It is a shocking situation in the 21st century. It is a huge change. We have gone back 200 years.''

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Reply Posted by Pippa on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:07
Hang on!! we both work and pay £118 a month!! a month!!! so i'll gladly swap and pay £249 per annum!! makes me sick to think people are kicking off about this!!!

Reply Posted by keith on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:13
agree totally Pippa! work & get no benefits or help with anything...wonder why i bother at times!

Reply Posted by shane on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:15
what a pity ! dear me lets look after people on benefits bugger them what work ! at the moment me and my wife are struggling to live even though i am in full time emplyment and my wife works part time do we get any leeway or benefits ? it makes me sick !

Reply Posted by Neil on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:17
OK Pippa let someone not working do your so, so special job then you pay the £249 ,,, Ya make me sick, not everyone is as well off as you, dosnt make them unhuman.... Would you rather they sleep in Cardboard boxes or in Cells ? This person could be you one day .. I know a few who have worked for the last 30 years, some had accident's, some ill but now cant work...Ya really should not Tar everyone with the same brush....They are now on income support and pay nothing at the minute and £249.00 is a lot to some people.... Be thankfull for what you have got, ya may be on the other side of your rosy life one day....

Reply Posted by kate on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:21
am working and poor wheres my help!

Reply Posted by nicola on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:30
We are a working family with nursery fees council tax a hefty mortgage etc etc to pay and we are skint . Maybe it will teach people to go out and get a job

Reply Posted by Ann on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:32
I work and struggle like many. There sre pe
ople w fho have worked and contributed for many years. Its the ones that have never worked and dont want to that make the rest suffer. It comes down to much bigger things too.

Reply Posted by Gazza on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:42
How's about get out there and get a job then pay your council tax with your wages and get no hand out, I don't buy this there are no jobs out there. There are loads of jobs but not ones that most unemployed people want to do i.e Stack shelves, work at McD's, clean toilets etc. I get zero support and work hard, others should to the same Mr Houghton.

Reply Posted by michelle on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 16:44
I cannot believe the ignorance i am reading, like ''what a pity'', ''makes me sick''...how many of you working people last went for food handouts or charity shops to dress themselves or their children,struggled to live day to day,could this be that they are on benefits through no fault of their own...unless you are totally ignorant the majority of these people are redundant, disabled or victims of other peoples descisions....so before you cast your so called childish opinions just sit and take a minute to imagine not sleeping tonight or tomorrow and so on because what these cuts are going to cause are severe hardship for such families already experiencing extreme poverty....but I forgot to mention are desperate to work ...grow up and think and spare a thought not of sympathy but of hope that this country turns around and soon.

Reply Posted by angela on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 18:04
well said!!

Reply Posted by Kerry on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 18:39
Whoooo I'm working n I'm a single parent some weeks I ant a penny to scratch mi arse wi n for shopping at charity shops can't remember when I last bought owt new mi kids come first n they get clotthes when needed n I struggle day to day paying mi bill Robbin Peter to pay Paul n genuine people on benefits r well entitled to it but I know loads who fiddle the system or just can't be arsed to work but I don't see some ov these people they got fab houses tek there kids on daily treats n I tell mine son kids can't do owt this week coz mam ant no money these cuts will effect mi av worked 24 yrs payed mi way n god forbid my health continues so I am able to but love yes I too have sleepless nights thinking where I'm Gunnar get mi next penny from we not all on our high horses but u can understand why people get so pissed off coz every body is getting poorer but not all cases r genuine

Reply Posted by carl on Wednesday October 24 2012 at 14:23
the ppl who are bitching about working an get no help at least you have a job i was self employed for 17 yrs in building trade then one day i got up for work i couldnt breath i went to hospital and was diagnosed with c.o.p.d i cant go back on site for insurance reasons ive look for driving work and light duties work ive applyed for hundreds of jobs ??? so stop moaning as at least you have a job well paid or not you get more than £50 a week to live on ?? wait till the £11 a week for each spare bed room comes in and the community tax any one who thinks this is a good thing will change there minds when crime goes up in yorkshire more ppl growing drugs more false ins claims we need jobs not more cut backs

Reply Posted by Aunt Hiler on Wednesday October 24 2012 at 21:16
I agree, well said. Where's the community spirit and support Barnsley is famous for?

Reply Posted by linda on Sunday October 28 2012 at 15:33
well said michelle

Reply Posted by ANON on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 17:25
omg have you all heard yourselves i am 57 and too ill to work i have breathing problems i know this maybe my last winter because of the cuts to benefits i will not be able to keep warm or have a proper meal so while u are eating your meat and 2 veg spare a thought for people like me and all the elderly it will affect how many funerals are you going to see how many people will ueue upat a food bank bet git wont be you. you should be made to walk 1 day in our shoes.

Reply Posted by angry on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 17:39
i worked full time for thirty years without extra help i lived within my means, if i couldnt afford it i did without unfortunately i was forced to finish work through ill health i live on my own and recieve £105 per week because i worked i have to pay a portion of my rent and council tax. it costs me exactly the same to heat my home as it would a family,my electricity is exactly the same as a family,so is my water, tv licence food etc. im also trying to pay off debts inccured through having to stop work. do the maths people how can anyone say that i live a life of luxury on benefits. do i think i should get more NO i believe that benefits are in place so that people can survive.do i think people on benefits should be better off than people who work NO .what i do believe is that some people need to get a grip and realise not everyone is better off not working. not everyone on benefits gets all their rent and council tax paid. some of us do just survive and are gratefull to be able to do that

Reply Posted by Michele on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 17:44
I agree with your comments Michelle and Neil. My husband claims incapacity benefit for me and my 2 daughters which he only gets an extra £54.00 for the 3 of us. My husband hasn't worked for a few years which that is no fault of his own. He got made redundant from a printers when he became ill with kidney failure and he had to take them to a tribunal. My hubby is a qualified art teacher so he is hoping to get back into teaching one day. I can't work because i am on anti-depressants and they are quite strong so the doctor has advised me not to work at the moment. Plus my hubby and i are also carers for my 12 year old daughter who has diabetes which we get DLA for. My hubby and i would love to go back to work but at the moment it's not possible.

Reply Posted by greenginger on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 17:56
let us support the genuinely ill but anyone who physically can work should work. After 6 months of support how about you are given a job for which you are paid minimum wage. If you dont like it or can find a better one or will retrain then you can move on. Support then stops.
I dont think it can be right that the physically able can refuse work and continue to get benefits. My lazy brother jacked in work on the excuse that he was helping his epileptic wife but really he was better off not working. House paid for, 2 kids under 16 paid for, council tax paid etc. He is just gone 40 and cannot be bothered to work anymore. Then he sits on the computer all day and does nothing in the house for her or the kids. how many people do you all know like that? We are not moaning about the ones who cant work we are moaning about the ones who can but wont.

Reply Posted by lel on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 21:34
but what happens if she has a epileptic fit when he wasnt there ... she could die... obvious he is there as a carer ... seems like you got issues

Reply Posted by greenginger on Thursday October 25 2012 at 14:03
Just because he says he is a carer does not mean he is doing anything. He actually fannies about all day with his mates and tinkering with cars and stuff and getting cash in the hand. She has had several fits ( one a week) and has fallen often and where was he?? Not there. She deserves better is what I am saying. plus she has an 18 year old living at home not looking for work who sits in the house all day on the computer. So no I do not think I have issue whatever that means. Maybe you should comment when you know the facts?

Reply Posted by angry on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 18:15
there will always be scroungers but i feel sorry for their kids cos if benefits are cut the parents wont go without. it will be the poor kids,they didnt ask to be born into this society and feeling bitter towards their parents isnt going to help them we can all say if they have kids they pay for them but these kind of people really dont care what anyone thinks and the only ones that suffer are these kids

Reply Posted by Gem on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 20:30
I work and claim benefits.. My partner cannot find a job, people think its so easy.. It's NOT! He WILL do ANYTHING! He's sent his CV to so many people but got nothing! If we couldn't claim benefits then we wouldn't have a roof over pur heads, we nearly have now, trust me it's no walk in park living on benefits! I totally agree with what people are sayin in some way as there are people out there who are totally milking the system but at the minute we barely scrap by with the benefits we receive.. Everything is totally backwards, if I was a single parent or we BOTH didn't work then we could claim a lot more than we cant now would have more money.. Don't paint everyone with the same brush.. I hate being on benefits, it's totally not through choice and like I say we struggle now so if it comes in we have a further £20 a month to pay out, we'll struggle more, but I know it's not forever!

Reply Posted by lel on Tuesday October 23 2012 at 21:28
losing 25% is when you got a spare bedroom..and to be honest there so many familys wanting 3 bedroom .. so yes they should make people pay out for having a bigger house than what they need...

Reply Posted by John on Wednesday October 24 2012 at 10:09
I was on JSA a few months ago, but because we have our son living at home, and him being in full time employment, they take that into account..
I received £6 a week towards Council tax.. the rest I had to pay myself out of savings, which are all but gone... The JSA was also reduced by £7 a week.. Had my son not been working, or not living with us, we would have had another £35 a week to live on.
Luckily, I am back in employment at minimum wage... I say luckily, although we are no better off, but I would rather be working.

Reply Posted by angry on Wednesday October 24 2012 at 14:50
in therory lel i agree with under occupancy fees but in practice it cant work theres simply not enough 1 bed homes to move everyone who would only need 1 beds then of the people who are left under this system the majority would be classed as only needing 2 bedrooms so many of the 3 bed houses are going to end up left empty,you only have to look at private rented houses and notice that rents for these 3 beds are coming down and 2 bed house rents are going up

Reply Posted by pissed off on Wednesday October 24 2012 at 17:47
me and my husband have ended up on JSA we both would do ANYTHING for a job even if we was no better off, i would rather have the pride of working and be skint than be on the dole. me and my husband have no children cant get a council house/flat and there no private rented 1 bedrooms anywhere it annoys me how we get charged each week for having a spare bedroom i get £69.23 per week rent help and my rent is £100 a week so each month out of £111.45 per week for BOTH of us i have £100 rent to pay. council tax to pay food tv licence electric which is £20 a week same on gas now its cold water rates and also debts we ended up with while our benefits got sorted out. if we was to have kids we would get a extra £200 per week so we would end up on the same amount of money as someone working and get all our rent paid. meanwhile we are seriously struggling and having to rely on help from family just to get by, a luxury to us is having a full fridge and cupboards we cant afford beer n nights out pp who can thats on benefits its becuase there fiddling the system or just not paying their bills. please dont presume we are all the same as we are not we feel crap enough about having to walk into the job centre every 2 weeks knowing we are having to claim benefits without jumped up ppl slatting us even more

Reply Posted by Aunt Hilder on Wednesday October 24 2012 at 20:39
Evil Government. Imposing a tax people cannot avoid, the bedroom tax. Not enough housing for people to move or downgrade so they will be taxed, 14% for those with one extra bedroom and 25% for those with two. How can a government be considered compassionate when it taxes people without the means to pay? Shame on them.

Reply Posted by stevo on Wednesday October 24 2012 at 21:06
Benefits should be a stop-gap NOT a lifestyle choice!

Reading some of the comments above,i do sympathise with people that have had to give up work due to ill health and disability.
These people should get MORE benefits as they have at least paid into the system.

To the people that say there are no jobs out there ABSOLUTE RUBBISH!
There are PLENTY of jobs out there but folk dont want to do em cos they think that the jobs on minimum wage are beneath them.

I was made redundant this time last year and found a job within FOUR days! even though i have no formal qualifications.

However,i honestly think the minimum wage should be at LEAST £8 an hour.

This Tory government is rotten to the core as are the Labour Party that YOU,YES YOU VOTE IN IN BARNSLEY EVERY YEAR!

It is time for a change in Barnsley but it will never happen as people in this borough are pathetic weak minded individuals!

Thats my two penneth anyroad.


Reply Posted by greenginger on Thursday October 25 2012 at 14:06
Stevo you summed it up . Minimum wages should be higher and the welfare bill must be less. There are jobs but ppl wont have them or do them. Benefits have to be a stop gap and should stop after a set period of time.

Reply Posted by loz on Wednesday October 24 2012 at 21:30
i see both sides arguments but my son worked since leaving school for numerous years until he was laid off due to time off for health issues after the death of his child he now suffers acute depression despite this he applies for numerous jobs to be refused due to his mental health this is very unfair as he would love to work but employers just wont give him a chance so hes not claiming benefits by choice in this case my son is stranded in an endless cycle not by choice and people whos attitudes are you claim benefits youre a scrounger etc really make me angry please dont tar every claimant with the same brush

Reply Posted by Pippa on Thursday October 25 2012 at 10:55
Did i say my life was rosy? We BOTH work full time and are still skint! The difference being that no one will help you AT ALL if you are working. And, i actually helped out in a soup kitchen last year, and paid £80 for a Christmas cake in an auction going towards this years soup kitchen. So don't YOU tar everyone with the same brush either!

Reply Posted by angry on Thursday October 25 2012 at 12:02
can someone please tell me how with 2 full time wages equalling at least £500 a week be struggling, but yet someone on £100 a week lives a life of luxury i pay a portion of my rent and council tax. pay exactly the same as everyone else for gas,electric,tv licence,water, food etc dont recieve the fuel payements in winter because unfortunately worked my ass of for thirty years and payed my dues which ment i wasnt able to claim income support yes im older tham most of you on here and brought up the old way if you cant afford it you do without but i can tell you this if i had £500 a week coming in i would be living a decent life

Reply Posted by greenginger on Thursday October 25 2012 at 14:10
Well who said that two full time wages equals that amount of money?

Yes you pay a portion of your bills whilst ppl working pay all their bills. Plus usually a mortgage and often a car to travel to work. plus are you looking after one person or a family of 4, 5 or even 6?

You are also older so have you small kids? Nappies, school uniform dinners and school trips?

I know loads who are working and are struggling because they are paying so much in tax to help pay for you lot.

Reply Posted by angry on Thursday October 25 2012 at 15:51
lets get one thing straight greenginger i paid over 30yrs into this system so no you dont pay for me and i know exactly how much the minimum wage is so dont go there the point i was making was that if someone on £500 a week cant manage then why do you think that someone on £100 a week lives a life of luxury and yes i worked full time all my adult life and fetched up 2 kids with no working families tax credits ,no help with childcare costs etc oh and by the way i couldnt afford a car when i was working so did what many others do get on the bus ,which added 2 hrs onto my working day. and when you cant walk more than 20/30 metres without fighting for every single breath when you go from being an healthy hard working person to some one who is a fraction of the person they were then you can judge me

Reply Posted by greenginger on Friday October 26 2012 at 17:19
angry yes lets get a few things straight. I am not a kid who has not paid into the system. If I am still paying tax then yes I do pay for your benefits. I have also travelled to work on foot and by public transport.
You dont state how many ppl your 100 quid is currently paying for but what about the families with only one working due to other doing child care. If on minimum wage they may only have 200 to 250 per week coming in and that might have to stretch to keep a full family going. So in answer I would love to have a spare 100 quid for myself! BTW I also have health issue so dont cry on my shoulder pls.

Reply Posted by Aunt Hilder on Thursday October 25 2012 at 17:27
Time to stop this one side v the other side back biting.

What next, those without children saying those with shouldn't get child benefit or child tax credits? Those in work and on a high wage saying those claiming working tax credit are scrounges?

The mark of a decent society is when we can look after each other, and that includes everyone. Claiming benefits shouldn't be a life style choice and those who can work should work. But, while out of work they need all the support we can give them. A life on benefits isn't a rosy life despite what a lot of people think.

I work, have kids, pay tax, don't claim any benefits other than child benefit and do not begrudge those who we, as a society, have decided needs help.

There is too much of the I'm all right jack being displayed on this discussion. It does you no credit at all.

Reply Posted by greenginger on Friday October 26 2012 at 17:22
Have you not been keeping up? ppl with no kids are already attacking those with.

I am in the same boat as you but I dont think that the minimum wage is high enough if those who are working are struggling just as much if not more than those who are not. I am sick of the unemployed whining about the workers.

Reply Posted by angry on Thursday October 25 2012 at 20:47
aunt hilder that is the most common sense anyone has spoken on this site. i for one spent over 30 yrs contributing to the system and never begrudge helping those who needed it most i just hope your statement never comes true but i cant help feeling that by the end of this governments term that is exactly whats going to happen

Reply Posted by working lass on Friday October 26 2012 at 10:59
i would just like to say a massive congratulations to this government for the way they have manipulated and brain washed the low paid workers of this country into thinking that you are actually doing something for them by cutting peoples benefits,you have managed to cause so much bitternes that us workers havnt actually realised that what you are doing doesnt actually improve our standard of living, it doesnt give us a decent living wage all you have done is push people on the poverty line over the edge,and i for one am embarassed by the fact that you managed to manipulate my mind into feeling bitter towards the most vunerable people of this country. i totally agree that people who are not working shouldnt have a better standard of living than workers, but the truth is the majority of genuine claiments dont and punishing these people doesnt help us so, come on mr cameron you done what you set out to do so how are you going to repay the people whos heads youve managed to turn how about raising the minimum wage for their loyalty

Reply Posted by karen on Friday October 26 2012 at 16:11
Well said Neil
I have been rich and poor and know both sides.

Reply Posted by p on Friday October 26 2012 at 16:40
At the age of 16, which was back in the year 2000, I got my self a so called apprenticeship with a firm called william cook hi-tec integrity, to be honest I never recall missing a days work, I worked my way up until I got a decent wage which meant I was a tax payer when I was 18 years old. When I reached 20 a big firm in America went bust, that firm was called Enron, hundreds of workers lost there jobs. I decided to join the British Army where I was a tax payer. I met my wife whilst serving for this country and we had our first child together in Germany. I decided that 5 years service was enough and got out of the army. I actually thought I could easily find a job with the army experience but struggled. I had no choice but to go to the Job center. I have never felt like a loser in all my life, the job center employees looking down out you, and they have no idea what I have done in my past. 1 month later I got a job at Ventura call center, but this was not my field of work,plus petrol to get there was ridiculous, so i applied for a job at a shoe exporting place in chapeltown, I was treated like a 2nd class citizen, however if it wasn't for them I would not be self employed now. This country has forgotten their morale's of looking after those who need help. People judge other people on today not yesterday or tomorrow.

Reply Posted by working lass on Friday October 26 2012 at 17:07
greenginger your bang out of order mate refering to angry as one of you lot. from what ive read this person has worked most of their adult life to ensure that there is work for us now because its people like this who have worked to ensure there was something for the next generation namely you and i. you should be thanking this person not insulting them

Reply Posted by greenginger on Friday October 26 2012 at 17:28
I am not out of order and to be honest I have probably paid more tax in my 20 odd years of working than he has, if you want to be picky. Why should I thank him for becoming a burden? I am thanking all the people on here who are working on low wages and still struggling because they are making the effort. I dont need you whoever you are giving me a dressing down thanks. I have health issues but dont claim benefits. You are out of order for posting when you dont know the facts. This thread is about council tax remember and I pay mine in full as always.

Reply Posted by working lass on Friday October 26 2012 at 17:56
sorry but you are how dare you call someone a burden who as worked all their life do you really think this person asked to be so ill they had to finish work and yes i can coment because i know this person and obviously your health issues dont affect you to the point where you are unable to work while you were fit enough to be at work today let me tell you where this person was ,having tests to find out if besides every other thing wrong with them they have now gone into kidney failure and bare in mind this person paid their council tax in full for over 30 yrs so if in 10 yrs time you are still fit enough to work or still have a job to go to then you can pass coment on someone you dont know and i can garantee you this if you saw how ill this person is you would definitely be eating your words oh and one more thing when anything happens to this person i will personally take you to meet their family and see if you have the balls to say to thier faces that they were a burden on you. im sorry angry i know you told me to ignore him but the ignorance of this person is unbelievable

Reply Posted by angry on Friday October 26 2012 at 19:00
please dont let him upset you hun i dont have to justify myself i was a working mum all my adult life. i didnt choose to be ill its the cards ive been dealt im afraid, im proud to say ive worked and done everything possible to provide for my family. luckily they are now grown up work and support themselves if i could wave a magic wand and get my health back i would unfortunately this cant happen, so if that makes me a burden then so be it.

Reply Posted by Jono on Saturday October 27 2012 at 08:08
Wow reading these comments how i long for the old Barnsley.The environment has changed for the better over the last 30 years ,But a lot of the citizens havnt ,as my old dad used to say " Now people can get mortgages we will soon be inundated with a class of 30 bob millionaires ".Thatcher not only got rid of your jobs but created a class structure within the working class.The seed was planted and continues to grow.Yes there are a lot of people out there that are able to work but find it easier to sit on their buts all day but done blame them blame the system ,there is also a lot of people who cant work for genuine reasons ,What shall we do with them ? put them in camps and gas them ?.No i thought not.Hard times ? you have seen bugger all, in my house when i was a kid we wore pumps winter and summer and a cooked dinner on Sundays.But in my village we were all the same "Ragged arsed rovers" If you think your councillor isnt doing their bit get rid of the buggers.we pay them well . Please be nice Barnsley xx

Reply Posted by angry on Saturday October 27 2012 at 10:42
you are so right jono id love to see the old community spirit back that we had back then. people didnt have much but everyone buckled in to help each other,there were scroungers back then and no doubt there will still be scroungers long after im gone, i just think its such a pity that some people are saying that genuinely ill people are a burden i just hope that ive brought my kids up in the right way, to work hard,never env y what someone else has,help those less fortunate,and never pass judgement on people they dont know oh and jono i was one of the ragged ass rovers but by god i was happy lol

Reply Posted by navekmac on Sunday October 28 2012 at 15:09
yip,this government is adament it will divide and conquer..some of the working class above have forgot these benefits are for them as well if they end up unemployed..ahh but this government is on your side so you think...utter stupidity...you are known as sheeple...bah...wake up..you are nothing to them except stil underpaid and overworked and obviously easily led...bahhh

Reply Posted by john on Sunday October 28 2012 at 15:30
greenginger lets get summat straight here mate you do not pay for my mum. we work damned hard and pay taxes so as far as im concerned we support our mum after all the years she as supported us,and if you continually insist on refering to her as a burden then at least have the guts to do so using your real name instead of hiding behind an alias. we were brought up to respect our elders pity your not the same

Reply Posted by Aunt Hilder on Sunday November 4 2012 at 09:24
And Greenginger wonders why I consider him/her a fool!

Reply Posted by red on Sunday October 28 2012 at 19:02
I agree with stevo.... The minimum wage realy dose need to be higher, since I have started a new job ( on bit higher wage) I have come to realise this. I think a big problem in barnsley also with jobs is NOT WHAT YOU KNOW BUT WHO YOU KNOW I I have realisd this in last 4 jobs. I wouldn't have this job what I have now if it wasn't for a good friend.

Reply Posted by ian on Sunday October 28 2012 at 22:18
im on JSA have been for 6 months..... also in the 6 months ive been trying like hell to get a job BUT I AM NOT (idont give one what anyone says) i am not working for commission or self employed ... as i have 2 kids and a 3rd on the way.... instead of u guys botching about people claiming JSA give me a job or shut the hell up... its easy for u because u have a job allready... i want to support my family but cant.... how do u think i feel when i keep getting turned down? i come home and chuck a party? no i feel like shit so yea give me a job or shut it complainin