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Self Assessment customers use monthly payment plans to pay ₤46 million in Tax

MORE than 20,000 Self Assessment customers have used HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) online monthly payment plan service since April 2021 to spread the cost of their Tax bill, totalling ₤46 million so far, it has been revealed.

Where customers are struggling to pay their bill in full, the Self Serve Time to Pay service allows Self Assessment customers to manage how they pay their Tax liabilities. Customers can use the online service for Tax bills worth up to ₤30,000 without the need to talk to HMRC. The service will create a bespoke monthly payment plan for the customer based on how much Tax is owed and the length of time needed to pay.
Last year, 123,000 customers used Self Serve Time to Pay to spread the cost of their 2019/20 Tax bill, worth ₤460 million.
Customers have until 31 January 2022 to complete their 2020/21 Tax Return and pay their bill. If they can't pay in full, customers can set up their own Time to Pay arrangement online if they:-

  You have filed their 2020/21 Tax Return.

You owe less than ₤30,000.

You are within 60 days of the payment deadline.

  You plan to pay their debt off within the next 12 months or less.
If customers owe more than ₤30,000, or need longer to pay, they should call the Self Assessment Payment Helpline on:- 03002003822.
Myrtle Lloyd, HMRC's Director General for Customer Services, said:- "We understand some customers might be worrying about paying their Self Assessment bill this year, and we want to support them. To see if you're eligible to set up a payment plan, go to GOV.UK and search:- 'pay my Self Assessment.'"

Self Serve Time to Pay is just 1 way customers can pay their Self Assessment Tax bill, a full list of alternative payment methods is available online.
HMRC urges everyone to be alert if they are contacted out of the blue by someone asking for money or personal information. Customers should always type in the full online address the HMRC's website to get the correct link for filing their Self Assessment return online securely and free of charge. HMRC sees high numbers of fraudsters emailing, calling or texting people claiming to be from the department. If in doubt, HMRC advises not to reply directly to anything suspicious, but to contact them straight away and to search GOV.UK for:- 'HMRC scams.'

Budget consultation hits the road

LIVERPOOL City Council is taking its budget consultation on the road; so it can engage with residents face to face about options to save ₤34 million in 2022. The Local Authority has already seen its funding reduced by around 65% since 2010, with spending now ₤465 million a year less than it was in 2010. Council Tax only raises 40% of the total needed, with the remainder coming from Government grants and business rates. For the 1st time, the Council is hitting the streets on a 6 day roadshow, to talk to residents about the budget proposals in person, giving people without easy online access a chance to voice their opinions and feed in their views.

Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Finance and Resources, Cllr Jane Corbett, said:- "There are no easy decisions in the proposals being put forward for consultation. These budget proposals protect Children's Centres, Lifestyles Leisure Centres, our Council run Libraries and our anti poverty grants but there will inevitably be a lot of pain to go through due to the triple whammy of austerity, Covid19 and in work poverty. What we are determined to do is give people the opportunity to express their views in a range of different ways. We do not have a monopoly on ideas or opinions and we know that not everybody has access to the internet or email, so taking ourselves to where people are, rather than expecting them to come to us, gives us a chance to hear from those who might not normally have their voices heard. We really need residents to get involved and have their say during the 10 week consultation period. We need to come together to build back fairer. All concerns, ideas and views are very welcome."

Already taken place have been:-

  Monday, 13 December 2021, at Old Swan Tesco.

  Tuesday, 14 December 2021, at Breck Road Everton (near Asda)

  Wednesday, 15 December 2021, at Tesco Park Road.

The roadshow events still to be held are being held at the following venues:-

  Thursday, 16 December 2021- 12-3pm at Belle Vale Shopping Centre (to be confirmed)

  Friday, 17 December 2021- 12-3pm at Speke Shopping Centre.

  Saturday, 18 December 2021 - 12-3pm Williamson Square, Liverpool City Centre.

Proposals totalling ₤18.7 million have been drawn up following consultation between the Cabinet and Council Officers, including a mix of reductions in spending and generating additional income.

The options include:-

  A review of the controlled parking zones and services - to generate ₤1.6 million.

  A ₤40 annual charge for green bin collections - to raise ₤1.7 million.

  Charging private landlords and social housing providers for pest control - to bring in ₤200k.

  Managing demand for School transport - to save ₤500,000.

  Reviewing high cost packages of care to ensure individual needs are being met and funded in the correct way - to save ₤1.9 million.

  Increasing revenue from filming, cruise liners and events - to bring in ₤270,000.

  Management restructure - to save ₤200,000.

  Review of subsidy given to several externally run Libraries - to save ₤280,000.

The roadshow is part of a wider consultation on proposals, and also includes a:- 'budget calculator' enabling residents to indicate where they would like savings to be made, as well as drop in sessions for people to feedback, briefings for Councillors and stakeholders and a live online Q&A with Mayor of Liverpool Joanne Anderson.

All of the budget saving proposals will be viewed in relation to the Mayor's triple lock regarding their impact on people, planet and equality. As well as hearing more about the budget proposals, residents visiting the roadshow will also be able to speak to Council staff about other services; including:- how to register their interest in becoming a foster carer, and more about the fitness offer through Lifestyles Centres. The City's Covid Rapid Response Vehicle will also be onsite daily, to offer free Covid testing. The events will be Covid19 compliant and staff will be wearing face coverings. Following completion of the consultation, a final budget report will be drawn up and considered by the Cabinet in February 2022, and will then be debated and voted on in a special budget Council meeting on Wednesday, 2 March 2022. More information on the budget can be found at:- Liverpool.Gov.UK and the budget calculator can be found at:- Liverpool.BudgetSimulator.Com.

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