Direct debits save Islington �500,000

Residents choosing to pay their council tax by direct debit have helped Islington Council make �500,000 of additional savings as government cuts bite.

Latest figures show an extra 16,000 residents have chosen the automatic payment method over the last few years, bringing the total up to just under 47,000.

Direct debits cost the council just over a penny per customer to set up while cheque and card processing costs nearer 50p. Altogether, payments by direct debit save about �500,000 per year.

Cllr Richard Greening, executive member for finance, Islington Council said: “We are protecting the services residents most value in spite of massive government cuts to our budget.

“I would like to thank everyone who pays council tax by direct debit and to encourage others to follow their example, as the money saved helps us to protect front line services such as children’s centres and libraries.”

Islington Council offers a prize draw for residents who choose to pay their council tax by direct debit.

Those not already registered need to do so by November 24 for a chance to win �1,000 in that month’s draw. January’s prize is �3,000. They also have their details entered into an annual London-wide �25,000 draw.