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Coronavirus: Support scheme to help struggling households in Harrogate extended

Coronavirus: Support scheme to help struggling households in Harrogate extended

Published by Local Democracy Reporter Jacob Webster at 2:37pm 3rd July 2020. (Updated at 6:45am 5th July 2020)

A coronavirus support scheme - to help struggling households in Harrogate with their council tax bills - will run throughout 2020.

  • Harrogate councillors have signed off the extension of a coronavirus support scheme to help struggling households with their bills.  
  • The hardship fund cuts bills by £150 for the district’s hardest-hit residents.
  • There's been a 30 per cent increase in the number of residents asking for help with bills during the virus outbreak.   

Councillors have signed off a move to extend the hardship fund - which will cut bills by £150 for the district’s hardest hit and lowest paid residents.

The number of residents asking for help with bills has gone up by 30 percent during the pandemic.  

The council has been allocated £863,000 of government cash as part of the hardship fund – just under £280,000 of which will be deducted from bills in the coming months.

Julie Gillett, revenue services manager at the council, told a virtual meeting the remainder of the money will be deducted from bills later in the year and possibly into 2021.

council tax calculator

She said:

“At the start of June we had nearly 5,000 working age households claiming help through our council tax reduction scheme – and we’ve had approximately a 30 per cent increase in case load since covid.

“The proposed initial award of £150 wouldn’t spend all our funding allocation to start with because we need to ensure that we keep sufficient funding throughout the year to continue to award any hardship relief onto any new claims.

"The Covid crisis could mean there will be further increases in unemployment later in the year, such as when the furlough and self-employment schemes  end.”


Residents must already receive council tax support to be eligible for the help, and don't need to apply as the money will be automatically deducted from bills.

Anyone struggling to pay their council tax should click here to see what other support is available.