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This report presents findings from a representative survey of public attitudes to council tax for 2023.

Questions related to knowledge and attitudes to council tax were included in the Wales Omnibus Survey in March 2023, focusing on perceptions of the fairness of council tax and options for reform.

Main findings

  • Respondents to the survey were evenly split between those who reported that they knew a fair amount about council tax and those who reported that they knew very little about it.
  • When asked to name services funded by council tax, the most common services named were bin or refuse collection, police, and roads or road maintenance.
  • The survey showed that the majority of respondents found paying council tax a simple process and would know who to contact if they had a problem with council tax.
  • Respondents had mixed attitudes in terms of whether their council tax bill reflects the current value of their home.
  • The majority of respondents disagreed that they had seen the benefit of council tax invested in their local community or that the council tax system is fair, and over half reported that it was not clear to them how council tax is spent.
  • Respondents had mixed attitudes towards the extent to which the council tax system supports people who cannot afford to pay, and whether local councils have enough control over council tax rates.
  • The majority of respondents reported that the amount of council tax they are expected to pay is too high. However, when provided with information about the services which are funded by council tax, a smaller proportion of respondents described their council tax bill as too high, with a greater proportion of respondents describing their bill as about right or too low in light of this information.
  • The majority of respondents agreed that council tax should be replaced with a different system of local taxation to make it fairer. When asked about alternatives, a system of local taxation based on income was perceived as the fairest system.
  • In terms of what should be the aims of a new system of local taxation, respondents indicated that the most important aim is that payment systems should be simple.
  • The majority of respondents found it easy to access information about their council tax and most accessed this information using a local council website.


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