Laura Sharman 19 August 2015

Lincolnshire councils launch 'fraud-fighting force'

Councils in Lincolnshire have joined forces to crack down on people falsely claiming discounts on their council tax.

The new Lincolnshire Counter Fraud Partnership, formed by the county council and all seven districts councils, will enable the councils to share resources and expertise, and pool fraud intelligence.

It will initially focus its efforts on identifying false claims for single person discount and council tax support.

Lucy Pledge, head of corporate audit & risk management at Lincolnshire County Council, said: 'Although we are starting by looking at council tax, we will also be carrying out investigations into other types of fraud too. This includes procurement and contract fraud and housing tenancy fraud such as using false information to access housing or unlawful subletting.

'We want to send a strong message that if you try to cheat the system, we will be using all the resources at our disposal to protect the public purse.'

Official figures suggest fraud costs local government an estimated £2bn every year.

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