With 99.4 per cent of rates collected for the 2012-2013 financial year Douglas Borough Council has exceeded its 99 per cent corporate plan target.
The 99.4 percentage equates to £10.2 million and reflects the success of incentive campaigns encouraging customers to pay their rates either in full by a specified date to attract a five per cent discount or by 10 direct debit instalments.
The Council has also exceeded its 99 per cent rent payments corporate plan target. With rents paid one week in advance, a figure of 100.2 per cent was achieved for the last financial year, equating to £12.9 million.
For both rates and rent the Council continues to pursue all outstanding amounts.
Ease of payment by direct debit has contributed to the target being exceeded coupled to the Council’s recent streamlining of its housing management structure. This has seen performance officers adopting a proactive approach, connecting more regularly with tenants and making courtesy calls on those who may be encountering difficulties and working with them to reach a suitable payment solution.
More than 38 per cent of Council tenants and 31 per cent of ratepayers pay by direct debit. There is also a growing use of the Council’s website for online payments.
Council leader Councillor David Christian JP said: ‘These excellent results demonstrate how the Council is succeeding in a number of key objectives set out in the corporate plan; principally developing more channels of communication between the Council and its customers and providing them swifter and easier access to our services. To this end the Council’s website self-service functionality has been significantly upgraded to provide the convenience of online payment of rent and rates.
‘The results are also testament not only to the efficiencies achieved through strengthening the Council’s housing section but also to the diligence of our officers and the productive links forged with our customers.’
To find out more about direct debit payments for rates and rents please visit the home page and follow the links or call into Douglas town hall.
Alternatively, please refer to the panel opposite.