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Armed Forces: Housing

Volume 492: debated on Tuesday 19 May 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment she has made of the merits of allowing members of the armed forces to claim single household council tax rebate for married quarters when posted to other military establishments in the UK; and if she will make a statement. (276158)

A dwelling (including married quarters) of which the Secretary of State for Defence is the owner, held for the purposes of armed forces accommodation, is exempt from council tax under Class O of the Council Tax (Exempt Dwellings) Order 1992 (SI. 1992/558). A local authority therefore cannot issue a council tax demand notice in respect of such a property, and the question of single person discount does not arise.

The Ministry of Defence pays a contribution in lieu of council tax to local authorities in respect of the totality of the dwellings on each of its estates, in an amount broadly equivalent to the amount of tax that would otherwise be due. As part of the terms and conditions under which service personnel occupy such quarters, an amount is recovered by the Ministry from the occupiers. The detail of those arrangements is determined by the Secretary of State for Defence.