HOUSEHOLDS face a 3.5% increase in council tax from April.
Kirklees Council set the new rate at a special meeting last night.
The ruling Labour and Lib Dem coalition proposed the 3.5% increase, while opposition Conservatives and Greens supported a 3% rise.
Council leader Clr Mehboob Khan said a 3.5% rise would protect services.
He said: “We have looked at what’s required to achieve decent services. A 3.5% increase is the equivalent of an extra 8p a week compared to a 3% increase, we believe this is value for money to deliver significantly better services.”
The Labour man added that future annual rises may not be as high. Clr Khan said: “I believe there is scope for a significant reduction in inflation which will ensure we can review the level of council tax.”
Kirklees deputy leader Clr Kath Pinnock also supported the 3.5% increase last night .
The Lib Dem said: “These are testing times for the council as the national financial turmoil has resulted in stark challenges and choices.”
Clr Pinnock added that the joint Labour/Lib Dem budget would help tackle the effects of the recession.
She said: “We have clear priorities including providing more family housing for rent and improving access to advice services for people struggling with debt and unemployment.”
Conservative leader Clr Jim Dodds proposed a 3% rise, and offered a discount to people who pay their bills on time.
He said: “We would set aside funds to allow a £40 council tax rebate later in the year for people who are up-to-date with their payments.”
Clr Dodds criticised Labour and the Lib Dems for proposing a 3.5% increase.
He said: “It’s a great shame you have taken this course of action. What a terrific start for your doomed alliance.”
Clr Graham Simpson of the Greens proposed a 3% rise and supported cancelling the Tesco and Queensgate developments in Huddersfield town centre.
He said: “We believe it’s wrong for the council to support these developments. Cancelling them would save £600,000 next year and £2m in 2010-11.”
The 3.5% rise passed by 44 votes to 19.
Calderdale Council decided this week to raise council tax by 2% in 2009/10. Bradford City Council has opted for a 2.5% increase for next year while Leeds has set a 2.9% rise and Wakefield has opted for 3.8%.