THOUSANDS of low-income families in Wirral are set to be given new reductions in their council tax bills.

More than 9,000 households across the borough are set to be affected by the planned reduction scheme, which will come about thanks to an £800,000 investment by the council.

Proposals are set to be considered by the cabinet later this month, and if approved, a public consultation will be then launched over the changes.

Cllr Janette Williamson, cabinet member for finance and income generation, said: "In 2013, this heartless Tory Government abolished council tax benefit for hundreds of thousands of low-income households across the county.

"They replaced this support with the local council tax support scheme, cutting the funding by 10% at the same time.

"The decision disadvantaged thousands of vulnerable, low-income Wirral families.

"Since its implementation, Wirral has tried its best to retain protection for these households, giving them the support which they need.

"And whilst Tory ministers in Westminster continue on their mission to balance the books on the backs of Wirral's poorest communities, I am delighted we have now developed a proposal to help us go even further in supporting those most in need.

"Our plan will see more than 9,000 low income households get a better deal on their council tax."

The authority currently gives reductions of £28m to around 32,000 householders each year, but if new proposals are agreed, thousands of these families would see their council tax bills cut from 2020 onwards.

It’s not yet known exactly how much will be knocked off bills, but the news follows last year’s council tax rise of 5.99%, and this year’s expected 2.99% increase, set to be approved next month.

According to the local authority, the current reduction scheme, introduced in 2013 following the government’s abolition of council tax benefits, saw many families in the borough struggle to make payments.

The local authority then decided, in addition to protection offered to pensioners, to also protect other groups of householders in receipt of certain disability benefits, as well as reducing the requirements for all other working age claimants in non-protected groups.

Cllr Williamson added: "As a Labour administration, we have always promised to put the most vulnerable first – this proposal is that promise in action."

The proposed changes are expected to be approved at the council's next cabinet meeting on February 18.