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Onchan rate rise kept to a minimum

Onchan's rates are to go up by 4p, to 266 pence in the pound.

The 1.5% rise is well below the rate of inflation, which stood at 2.8% last month.

The member in charge of finances, Ernie Thorn, says it's in response to a request from Local Government Minister John Shimmin.

He has asked for all local authorities to keep increases to a minimum so people already struggling to pay their bills aren't hit even harder.

Last year Onchan's rates went up by 9%, or 22p in the pound, which could have contributed to a number of commissioners losing their seats at the subsequent local authority election.

Mr Thorn says although that hike was criticised at the time, he is pleased to report it was entirely successful and has placed the board on a firm footing to continue prudent budgeting in the future.

The January 2009 inflation figure was the lowest for two years, after a 1.9% fall from the previous month.

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