‘Prepared for bedroom tax’

MIDLOTHIAN Council is confident it can avoid the upcoming Under Occupancy Charge creating a ‘Poll Tax-style’ protest which would leave a shortfall in its budget.

As reported last week, elected members raised concerns that the council will struggle in attempts to collect payments from the 830 council tenants affected by this welfare change, known also as ‘the bedroom tax’. Midlothian Council is responsible for collecting an estimated £395,000 from those who have to pay back 14 per cent of their housing benefit for ‘under-occupying’ a home by one room and 25 per cent for two or more rooms.

However, in an exclusive brief on the welfare reforms, acting director Eibhlin McHugh told the Advertiser that the local authority is prepared for the changes in April.

For more on this, pick up a copy of the Midlothian Advertiser of December 20.