HERO FIGHTING IN AFGHANISTAN MUST PAY COUNCIL TAX

A SOLDIER fighting on the front line in Afghanistan has slammed town hall chiefs who say that he must pay council tax on his empty house.


Private Luke Savage, 19, who bought his first home last November wrote to council bosses saying that he should not have to pay the tax on his empty and unfurnished property while he is on a seven-month tour of duty – and pointed out that prisoners are spared the charge.

But the soldier was told that he was exempt from paying council tax for only the first six months that his house was empty – and that from next month he will have to pay 50 per cent of the full rate.

Pte Savage, who flew to Afghanistan on March 14, said: “I am going to war and fighting for my country.

“Should I have to pay council tax for a property which is unfurnished and unlived-in, when someone who commits a crime and goes to prison doesn’t have to?”

His mother Jane, 46, added: “These men and women are not on holiday – they are fighting for their country.

“It’s extremely unpatriotic to expect them to pay when they are leaving a house completely empty. Luke won’t be using any of the services council tax pays for like libraries, highways or refuse collection. He doesn’t even own a wheelie bin yet.”

Pte Savage, whose home is in Castleford, West Yorks, is based in Germany with 46 Squadron – so when he gets back from Afghanistan he still won’t be living in the property.

He is hoping to get transferred to a post in the UK and will then be able to furnish and move into his house. However, Wakefield’s local authority insists that he must start paying council tax next month.


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