Finance Secretary Mark Drakeford will today launch proposals to exempt young care leavers from having to pay council tax.
The plans are the latest in a series of measures designed to make council tax fairer in Wales – a key Welsh Government commitment.
All young people leaving care will not have to pay council tax until the age of 25, if the proposals are approved following the 6 week consultation.
Professor Drakeford said:
“I want to ensure the Welsh Government and our local authorities are doing everything we can to support care leavers and are supporting their successful transition into adulthood and independent living.
“Last year, I asked local authorities to consider using their discretionary powers to grant a full dispensation from council tax for all care leavers, regardless of their individual circumstances. In October 2017, Torfaen Council became the first in Wales to exempt care leavers from paying council tax.
“This is an important opportunity to make our council tax system fairer and I am keen to hear everyone’s views and to work with stakeholders to improve our approach.”
As part of its pledge to make council tax fairer, the Welsh Government has been working to improve uptake of the council tax reduction scheme, which provides support for almost 300,000 vulnerable and low-income households in Wales with their council tax bills.
The consultation will run from 7 November to 19 December and will involve engagement with a range of stakeholders including local authorities, the WLGA, third sector organisations representing care leavers and care leavers.
Subject to the outcome of the consultation, the Cabinet Secretary for Finance will bring forward legislation to exempt care leavers from council tax from 1 April 2019.