Camden Labour refuse to give verdict on mansion tax until ‘full detail’ is clear

Cllr Theo Blackwell responded on behalf of the Labour group.

Cllr Theo Blackwell responded on behalf of the Labour group. - Credit: Archant

Camden Council’s Labour group has refused to pass judgement on the national party’s mansion tax policy until “the full detail of the proposals” become clear.

The Ham&High e-mailed every Camden councillor this week asking if they supported an annual levy on Camden’s £2million-plus homes in principle.

Cllr Theo Blackwell, cabinet member for finance and technology policy, responded on behalf of the Labour group.

He said: “Like most people we support fairer property taxes on unearned wealth. No one yet knows the full detail of the proposals, like when the tax will be paid, so we can’t give a definitive yes or no to your specific question.

“We expect more shortly and we are pushing for exemptions for those likely to be cash poor and asset rich, like some pensioners.”

The only other Labour councillor to respond was Cllr Lorna Russell, of Fortune Green ward, who took a more rebellious stance.

She said: “There are already four levies on property, and so rather than impose a new tax I would support a revaluation of council tax and the addition of new higher bands.”

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Camden Conservatives leader Cllr Claire-Louise Leyland said her group was strongly opposed to the mansion tax, insisting it had been central to their local election campaign in May.

Lone Green Party councillor Sian Berry supported the levy, while sole Lib Dem councillor Flick Rea said she supported an amended version of her party’s original mansion tax plans – with the introduction of “high value property tax bands” and “relief” for asset-rich, cash-poor residents.

For more reaction to Labour’s proposed mansion tax, see Thursday’s Ham&High.