[holding answer 22 March 2010]: The estimates referred to on 3 February 2010, Official Report, column 370, are the cost to central Government of providing every council in England with top up funding to compensate for freezing council tax for two years. This costing considered only the direct costs of providing a top-up, assumed to be equivalent to a 2.5 per cent. increase in band D bills in England.
The Treasury’s website was updated on 22 February 2010 to make clear that the costing, which was originally placed on the Treasury’s website on 24 December 2009 related to the cost to central Government of compensating local authorities.
The impact on council tax benefit of a two-year freeze on council tax has not been estimated.