Tax debtors face court

Three council tax debtors face a court date to explain why they owe over £7,700 in Amber Valley.

Warrants were issued against them by Southern Derbyshire magistrates on Monday January 28, ordering them to attend court on February 11.

A Heanor man owes £2,850 from this year’s bill, a Ripley woman is £2,900 behind with payments and a Leabrooks man has run up a £1,980 bill. Details were given during the hearing in Derby, where JPs gave permission for bailiffs to be sent into the homes of 185 residents, who owe a total of £66,500, including £70 each to cover the cost of the latest hearing.

Similar action was taken against 14 firms in the borough, which owe business rates totalling £48,988.

Revenue collections manager Martin Hendy said they would all receive letters asking them to “make arrangements to discharge balances.” After 14 days, bailiffs will be sent to properties with the legal power to seize items which can be sold to cover the debts. Mr Hendy said:”Sending in the bailiff is the last resort.”

Amber Valley has one of the best records of collecting council tax in England and Wates. It collects for the county council, the police and fire service, parishes and its own budget.