William Eichler 15 January 2016

Direct Debit campaign saves councils £2.5m

Direct Debit campaign saves councils £2.5m image

London-based local authorities have managed to save a total of £2.5m since 2010 by joining a campaign to encourage residents to pay council tax by Direct Debit.

The campaign, run by Bacs Payment Schemes Limited (Bacs), seeks to save councils money by persuading people to pay their council tax by Direct Debit rather than with cash or cheques, which are more expensive to process.

Last year, 16 London authorities managed to save a combined £450,000 by offering those paying by Direct Debit a chance to win a £25,000 prize draw.

2015 also saw local authorities in Yorkshire launch a similar joint initiative for the first time, with £6,000 in prize money being offered those paying by Direct Debit.

The participants--Bradford, Calderdale, Doncaster and Kirklees—were able to save over £170,000.

Dawneth Perry, Bacs' local authority sector specialist, said: ‘At a time when budgets are under continued pressure, there has never been a better time to Iook at the potential savings on offer through increasing the number of residents and businesses paying by Direct Debit.’

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