Nearly 90 per cent of local authorities plan on hiking council taxes this year, according to a new report out today from a leading local government group.
The Local Government Information Unit (LGiU), a think tank focusing on local governance, surveyed more than 130 councils across England and found that almost nine in 10 are increasing council taxes this year to raise more revenues. Just over 80 per cent said they will also dip into reserves in order to balance the books.
It's a stark change from last year, when just half of local authorities increased council taxes.
Under current rules, local authorities are allowed to increase council tax by up to 4 per cent this year - which would amount to another £60 in taxes for the average Band D household.
The LGiU also found that four in 10 councils intend to cut frontline services that are "evident to the public" off the back of funding cuts from central government.
Chancellor George Osborne has slashed central funding for councils while giving local authorities new powers to increase council tax.
Seventy per cent of councils surveyed by LGiU said Osborne's devolution of new powers to local authorities "needed to go further".