Application of Job Related Accommodation Council Tax Discount for members of HM Forces

Simon Griffiths made this Rhyddid Gwybodaeth request to Carmarthenshire Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

Roedd y cais yn llwyddiannus.

Dear Carmarthenshire Council,

In line with the reference material listed below: If Service Personnel’s sole/main residence in Wales is left empty due to Service-related reasons, then they should be eligible for a council tax discount of 50% on that home for the duration it remains unoccupied. However, in order to qualify for that discount, they must demonstrate that their current home is job related, by meeting at least one of the criteria set out within the regulations approved by Parliament.
These regulations state that a dwelling is job-related for a person if it is provided for them by reason of their employment.

The FOI Queries:

1. Does your authority honour the Job Related Accommodation Discount (currently 50%) for single or married service personnel who, due to their employment, live in Ministry of Defence provided accommodation but have an unoccupied and furnished property in your CT area?

2. If the answer is no to the above question, in either full or part, what is your authority’s interpretation of the regulations and how do you apply it?

3. Sole of Main Residence: With the application for Job Related Accommodation Discount, in regards to serving members of HM Forces, how does your authority categories accommodation provided by the Ministry of Defence?

4. How many properties currently receive the 50% Job Related Accommodation Discount to members of HM Forces in your area?

5. What proof of employment does your authority require for those applying for the Job Related Accommodation Discount?

Reference:

Welsh Statutory Instrument 2010 No. 612 (W.58) Council Tax Wales: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/wsi/2010/6...

House of Commons Briefing Paper, November 2018: http://researchbriefings.files.parliamen...

Yours faithfully,

S Griffiths

FOIA, Carmarthenshire Council

Diolch am eich ebost. Mae hwn yn derbyn sylw a bydd ymateb pellach yn cael
ei ddarparu cyn gynted â phosibl.

Os ydych yn gwneud cais am wybodaeth, bydd y cyfnodau isod yn berthnasol:

Deddf Rhyddid Gwybodaeth 2000/Rheoliadau Gwybodaeth Amgylcheddol 2004 - 20
diwrnod gwaith, oni bai bod angen eglurhad arnom ynghylch y wybodaeth yr
ydych yn gofyn amdano.

Rheoliad Diogelu Data Cyffredinol (ceisiadau am fynediad i ddata personol)
– un mis ar ôl derbyn y cais.

Os bydd angen eglurhad arnom ar unrhyw agwedd o’ch cais, byddwn yn
cysylltu â chi mor gynted ag y bo modd.

Tîm Llywodraethu Gwybodaeth
Cyngor Sir Gaerfyrddin

 

Thank you for your email. This is receiving attention and a further
response will be provided as soon as possible.

If you are making a request for information, the following timescales will
apply:

Freedom of Information Act 2000/Environmental Information Regulations 2004
- 20 working days, unless we need clarification regarding the information
you are seeking.

General Data Protection Regulation (requests for access to personal data)
– one month from the receipt of the request.

If we do need to clarify any aspect of your request, we will contact you
as soon as possible.

Information Governance Team
Carmarthenshire County Council

 

FOIA, Carmarthenshire Council

1 Atodiad

Dear Mr. Griffiths

 

I refer to your request for information, which was received on 10^th
April, 2019 and has been dealt with under the Freedom of Information Act
2000.

The specific information you requested was as follows:

1. Does your authority honour the Job Related Accommodation Discount
(currently 50%) for single or married service personnel who, due to their
employment, live in Ministry of Defence provided accommodation but have an
unoccupied and furnished property in your CT area?

The regulations we apply in such instances are the following –

Title, application and commencement

1.—(1) The title of these Regulations is the Council Tax (Prescribed
Classes of Dwellings) (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2010 and they come
into force on the 1 April 2010.

(2) These Regulations apply in relation to Wales.

Amendment of Regulations

2.—(1) The Council Tax (Prescribed Classes of Dwellings) (Wales)
Regulations 1998([1]3) are amended in accordance with paragraph (2).

(2) In regulation 2 (interpretation) for the definition of “qualifying
person” substitute—

““qualifying person” means a person who is liable for the council tax in
respect of a dwelling on a particular day, whether or not jointly with any
other person, or who would be liable for the council tax in respect of a
dwelling on a particular day if that dwelling did not fall within Class O
of the Council Tax (Exempt Dwellings) Order 1992([2]4);”.

Carl Sargeant

Minister for Social Justice and Local Government, one of the Welsh
Ministers

4 March 2010

These Regulations are made in accordance with section 12 of the Local
Government Finance Act 1992. These Regulations amend certain provisions of
the Council Tax (Prescribed Classes of Dwellings) (Wales) Regulations 1998
to provide that armed forces personnel who are required to live in
accommodation provided by the Ministry of Defence to perform the duties of
their office come within the definition of those with job-related
dwellings. This means that where those persons also have a second home in
Wales for which they are liable to pay council tax, the billing authority
for the area within which the second home is situated is prevented from
reducing the discount on that dwelling from 50%.

2. If the answer is no to the above question, in either full or part, what
is your authority’s interpretation of the regulations and how do you apply
it?

Not applicable

3. Sole of Main Residence: With the application for Job Related
Accommodation Discount, in regards to serving members of HM Forces, how
does your authority categories accommodation provided by the Ministry of
Defence?

The aforementioned regulation ensured that Welsh Authorities came into
line with English Authorities and awarded 50% discount on second homes
owned by Armed Forces personnel who live in accommodation provided by the
MOD.

 

Our professional body (IRRV) confirmed that someone residing in Barracks
paying CILOCT would still be entitled to the above named discount. Whilst
it is unfurnished, it abides with the regulations regarding unfurnished
dwellings. If the dwelling is furnished, we can treat it as being a
job-related dwelling and apply the appropriate 50% reduction.
4. How many properties currently receive the 50% Job Related Accommodation
Discount to members of HM Forces in your area?

 

As the class of discount we award is wide ranging and not confined to MOD
personnel, the only way to provide an answer would be to go through each
such discount individually.

 

Under Section 12 of the Act, a public authority is not obliged to comply
with a request if it considers that to do so would exceed the appropriate
limit.  This limit is defined in The Freedom of Information and Data
Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004 as £450, which
equates to 18 hours of work at the standard rate specified in the
Regulations of £25.00 per hour.

5. What proof of employment does your authority require for those applying
for the Job Related Accommodation Discount?

 

Confirmation from a commanding officer of your liability to pay Council
Tax, either for the property on the base or via CILOCT if residing in
Barracks.

 

If you disagree with this decision or are unhappy with the way in which
your request has been dealt with, you are entitled to complain in the
first instance to:

 

The Head of Administration & Law

Carmarthenshire County Council

County Hall

Carmarthen

SA31 1JP

 

Email: [3][email address]

 

If you remain unhappy with the handling of your request or complaint, you
have a right to appeal to the Information Commissioner at:

 

The Information Commissioner's Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

 

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

 

Telephone: 0303 123 1113

Website: [4]www.ico.gov.uk

 

There is no charge for making an appeal.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Julie John

Information Officer

Regeneration & Policy/Adfywio a Pholisi

Chief Executive’s Department/Adran Y Prif Weithredwr

Carmarthenshire County Council/Cyngor Sir Gaerfyrddin

 

Allanol/External (01267) 224498

Mewnol/Internal: 4498

 

[5]cid:image001.png@01D42E6B.C17E3840

 

 

References

Visible links
1. Go to footnote 3
http://www.legislation.gov.uk/cy/wsi/201...
2. Go to footnote 4
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3. mailto:[email address]
4. http://www.ico.gov.uk/