Boris Johnson promises £30 council tax cut

BORIS Johnson yesterday pledged to reduce City Hall’s share of council tax by 10 per cent if he is re-elected next month.

Speaking at the launch of his value for money manifesto in Fulham, Johnson said that a “war on waste” meant he could guarantee an annual reduction in the Mayor’s share of council tax over the next four years, totalling at least 10 per cent.

Currently all London households pay £306 per year towards the cost of the police, fire brigade, Transport for London and the Olympics.

Under Johnson’s proposal this sum would drop to at least £276 by 2016.

But a spokesman for Ken Livingstone said the pledge was a “desperate” move that would save householders just £30 a year: “The Tory Mayor knows that this election is about who will make Londoners better off and that I have the best policy to do this – a £1,000 average fares cut.”

“[The benefits] are tiny compared to the savings farepayers will make with my cut in fares, and what they will lose with Boris Johnson’s fares hikes.”

The Conservative candidate also reiterated his pledge to provide a 50 per cent rebate on the Mayor’s share of council tax to all special constables in the Metropolitan Police, an incentive worth around £150 per year.

“We are still going through some of the toughest times that anyone can remember, and that is why we cannot afford to go back to the wasteful approach of the previous City Hall administration,” Johnson said.

“By exploiting the possibilities of shared services, by bringing in the private sector, we can keep putting council tax money back in the pockets of Londoners.”

Johnson has frozen City Hall’s share of council tax since 2008 and in February he announced a symbolic one per cent reduction for the next tax year, supported by additional funding from central government.