COUNCIL tax is set to rise by almost four per cent in the Dudley borough.

Dudley Council announced the hike of 3.99 per cent today (Wednesday) in its budget proposals - with a £9.5 million investment in local services.

The council said if the rise is approved residents across the Dudley borough will continue to pay one of the lowest council tax rates in the country.

It said its cabinet is set to rubber-stamp a swathe of investments in CCTV, bin collections, open spaces and adult social care and that two per cent of the 3.99 per cent hike will go towards helping the elderly and most vulnerable people in the borough.

The increase, which amounts to less than 80p a week for the average home, or around £40 a year, will help pay for the proposed investments.

More than 1,400 people responded to the council’s budget consultation which has been running since November last year.

People were asked where the extra investment could be spent, with adult social care coming out on top.

Children’s services was ranked second with environment ranked third.

Health and wellbeing, regeneration and enterprise and housing came in fourth, fifth and sixth respectively.

The council’s cabinet will be asked to consider the outcomes from the consultation and pass the budget proposals to a meeting of the full council in March for a final decision.

Councillor Steve Clark, Dudley Council's cabinet member for finance, said: "We are planning the biggest investment in Dudley Council services in a decade, but we need to finance that.

"It is vital we talk to local people and find out how they want us to invest their money and I am delighted so many people came forward in this year’s budget consultation.

"One of the ways we are able to invest in services for local people is to raise council tax, but that is not something we ever do lightly.

"We have listened to local people and two per cent of that proposed increase will go specifically to adult social care services.

"I can also assure people they will still pay one of the lowest rates in the country, and that has to be good value for money.”

The budget proposals will be considered by cabinet on February 12.

Full council takes place on March 2.