Support available for those hard hit
IN East Devon, 4,272 council tax benefit claimants will be affected by the changes, paying on average an extra £207 a year, or £4 per week.
The district council's new local support scheme is similar to the one being introduced in Exeter, but with some slight differences (see panel at top of page).
Councillor David Cox, cabinet member for finance, said: "We will be directly contacting anyone who will be affected to make sure they know what's coming and have advice on how to cope.
"We've set aside funds to pay for an independent adviser to work with struggling families or individuals and see if they can make savings in other areas such as fuel and food bills, not just looking at their council tax liability.
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"The proposed scheme is designed to limit the impact on local people as much as possible while also protecting the most vulnerable members of society. But there's no getting away from the fact that it's yet another unwelcome cut which will hit many working families."
More information is available by calling 01395 517446 or online at www. eastdevon.gov.uk/ctsupport