Top Ranking for Borough from Audit Commission

Hammersmith and Fulham achieves four-star rating despite council tax cut

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Hammersmith & Fulham Council are celebrating the award of the top rating from the Audit Commission. The Borough has been reclassified as a four star authority..

The Council are claiming the achievement is all the more remarkable given that they also managed to deliver a 3 per cent council tax cut in April - the biggest in Britain.

Council Leader, Cllr Stephen Greenhalgh, says, "The sleeping giant has awakened in Hammersmith & Fulham. It's taken us just a year to deliver the biggest council tax cut in Britain and improve our star rating from
3 to 4."

Hammersmith & Fulham is in good company joining other top rated councils in London like Wandsworth, Westminster and neighbours Kensington & Chelsea.

Cllr Greenhalgh continues, "Critics have argued that you can't cut tax and improve services - but this proves you can. Hammersmith & Fulham is on its way to becoming a model council - delivering high quality, value for money services to all. We are making real improvements and starting to turn the council around. The mistake some people make is that higher tax equals better services and that lower tax means cutting services - it doesn't. Councils like Wandsworth, K&C and Westminster have proved year after year that it is possible to have excellent frontline services and low tax and now H&F has joined them."

The re-grading follows a re-examination of the evidence behind the council's cultural services score. In light of new evidence the Commission is now satisfied that the council meets all requirements to be awarded the top, 4 star rating. Over the last year there has been a significant improvement in the council's social care, benefits and use of resources performance and an improvement in 75 per cent of key performance indicators, particularly those for resident satisfaction.

May 10, 2007