Council tax and what it pays for

Find out what council tax is and how it helps pay for local services in East Riding of Yorkshire.

What is council tax?

Council tax is a yearly charge on all domestic properties and helps to pay for the following local services:

Council services

Council tax pays for a range of different services that are provided by the council.

Parish councils

Each town or parish council provides a different level of service based on the individual requirements of the area it serves. This means they are responsible for setting their own budgets and each year they make a request to us to include a charge for their services in your council tax bill. 

Special expenses

Special expenses are charges for services we provide, such as maintenance of parks, open spaces and closed churchyards, which in other areas of the East Riding are provided by the town and parish councils

Humberside Fire & Rescue

Your council tax bill includes a charge for fire and rescue services. We are required to collect this on behalf of Humberside Fire and Rescue. You can find out how much of your council tax money is required to provide their services and how the money will be spent:

Humberside Fire & Rescue (external website)

Humberside Police

Your council tax bill includes a charge for police services. We are required to collect this on behalf of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Humberside Police. You can find out how much of your council tax money is required to provide their services and how the money will be spent:

Humberside Police Crime Commissioner (pdf 324kb)

What's included in my council tax bill and why?

As council tax bills are sent out across the East Riding we have created this quick video to help you understand what everything on the bill means and why it is there:

Council tax bill explained (pdf 436kb)

Who has to pay council tax?

Only people aged 18 or over have to pay council tax. If there is more than one person aged 18 or over in your home, the person nearest the top of the following list is responsible for paying council tax:

  • resident freeholder
  • resident leaseholder
  • resident tenant
  • resident licensee
  • any other resident
  • the owner, if the property is not occupied.

A resident is someone aged 18 years or over who has their only or main home at your property. If you have two or more residents in your home that meet the same description (such as joint freeholders), they are jointly responsible for paying the bill. This means we require all or any one of them to pay the council tax.

An owner is someone who is the freeholder or someone who has a lease for at least six months, such as a tenancy agreement.

Married couples, those living together in a spousal relationship or civil partners have joint responsibility, even if they do not have an equal interest in the property.

Where does the council's money come from?

Our budget (gross expenditure) this year is £782.7 million. This includes budget savings of £4.9 million to help meet service cost pressures of £17.4 million (such as the rising costs of providing some of our services). 

This year we need to collect 22 per cent of our budget from council tax. This is £177.5 million. 

We have increased the council’s part of the council tax bill by 3.99 per cent.  This includes an increase to the general council tax charge of 1.99 per cent and a separate charge of 2% to contribute towards the rising costs of adult social care.

The table below shows our budget for the year and where our money comes from:

Income and expenditure 2019/20 (£m) 2020/21 (£m)
Gross expenditure 771,884,785 782,734,015
Income including customer and client receipts and specific grants -502,367,000 -494,964,780
Net budget 269,517,785 287,769,235

Government grants -46,301,000 -54,647,587
Retained business rates -53,767,000 -52,706,000
Collection fund surplus -633,000 -2,441,000
Special expenses -446,978 -459,936
Council tax requirement 168,369,807 177,514,712

Taxbase 116,543.90 118,159.60
Band D council tax 1,444.69 1502.33

Where does council tax money go?

We deliver a vast range of services to people who live and work in the East Riding of Yorkshire and the council tax we collect contributes towards the cost of providing these services.

In 2020/21, we plan to invest nearly £783m in services for residents, businesses and visitors.  This includes:

  • Over £174m on care services for older people and those with physical and/or learning disabilities. 
  • Over £26m on providing high quality leisure facilities, libraries and the customer service network.
  • Over £6m on economic regeneration which supports a range of activities which help business and employability of the local labour market.
  • We are also spending over £53m on Housing and Public Protection. We are committed to increasing the number of  homes to rent over the next four years by 550 and an increase in shared ownership homes of 86 over the same period


There is also a contribution towards services such as drainage and flood defences.

The table below shows how much has been allocated to each service in 2020/21.

Service £m (£) Percentage(%)
Education 308.3m 39.4%
Adult Social Care 174.2m 22.3%
Children's Social Care 30.8m 3.9%
Public Health 10.8m 1.4%
Planning and Development Management 5.3m 0.7%
Economic Regeneration 6.2m 0.7%
Leisure, Tourism, Library Services and Customer Service Network 26.3m 3.4%
Housing and public protection 53.5m 6.8%
Streetscene Services - including waste, recycling, grounds maintenance and street cleansing services 34.2m 4.4%
Transport 4.9m 0.6%
Highways and Property Maintenance 38.1m 4.9%
Benefit Payments 47.5m 6.1%
Business Support - including legal, democratic, finance, human resources, procurement and income collection services 42.6m 5.4%
Totals 782.7m 100%

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