A NINETY per cent hike in council tax precept has been approved for Lake residents — the first rise in four years.

Lake Parish Council promises it will give long-term stability — after it paid for repairs to public toilets.

The majority of councillors voted to approve the budget, with Cllr Jenny Hicks objecting to the increase.

The increase was agreed last night (Thursday) at a parish council meeting and will see a Band D household move from paying £51.83 to £98.50 a year.

Speaking at the meeting, chair Cllr Paul Brading said it had been a careful juggling act to get to where they are.

He said Lake Parish Council was in a very tight position and had just survived the financial year.

Vandalism to the New Road toilets had come at a heavy cost, he said.

Of the budget, 15 per cent (£30,000) had been spent on repairs.

Replacement toilets, hopefully to be installed in the coming year, will mean a saving, including in the cost of water and electricity.

Cllr Brading said it was a very tough budget and councillors were really aware of the impact on residents.

He said there was high pressure on the parish council's reserves and it needed to make sure it had put aside money to cover its assets.

The matter of hanging baskets was raised by Cllr Adrian Whittaker, who said he would have liked to see them included in the budget.

Cllr Sue Hardy said they didn't want to get rid of them but it was an easy cost to save.

Cllr Brading said the council was paying an absolute fortune (£4,000) to get someone to water them.

The watering contract will be renegotiated in the coming financial year and he said he was sure the hanging baskets would be back next year. 

The increase will come into effect from April 1, 2023, along with any increase to the Isle of Wight Council tax, police and fire precept.