Dominic Cummings' unpaid council tax estimated to fund more than 23,000 free school meals, finds report
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Dominic Cummings' unpaid council tax bill could fund thousands of free school meals, a report has found.
Figures from the Evening Chronicle show Cummings' debts could cover more than 23,000 meals in County Durham.
Cummings owes £50,000 in unpaid council tax on two homes built in breach of regulations. Instead of the charges being backdated, Cummings will now only face new fees set to come into effect in October.
This led Durham County Councillor John Shuttleworth to say: “If it was anybody else, they would be getting charged and it would be backdated, or they would be getting taken to court.
“It just proves there is two sets of rules, one for them and another for everyone else. It is not right.”
The Evening Chronicle found that a primary school meal in County Durham costs £2.10 meaning 23,809 meals could be made from the money Cummings owes.
According to the Chronicle, there are around 16,500 school children eligible for free school meals in the area.
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Labour MP Kevan Jones, who represents North Durham, said: “Many of my constituents are angry at the Valuation Agency’s decision not to backdate the council tax bill on properties in which Dominic Cummings has an interest which were built without planning permission in Durham council tax pays for local services.
“The government’s decision last week not to fund free school means that cost falls on local council tax payers.”
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Grahame Morris, MP for Easington, said council tax is “not an optional extra” and that the council has missed out because the Cummings family had failed to "play by the rules".
He added: “That money would cover the cost of providing free school holiday meals to the 3,605 children in my constituency who had food taken off their table last week by the Conservative government advised by Dominic Cummings.
“It is wrong and unfair that children in East Durham will go hungry, while individuals in privileged positions can write off their council tax."
Durham MP Mary Foy has also called for the money to be repaid.
She said: “I think it’s right to question the Valuation Office’s decision on the property and I know many of my constituents agree.
“People in Durham expect a level playing field, and too many times now Dominic Cummings has appeared to be above the law.
“At a time when school children are going hungry, the arrogance of his actions is even more striking.”
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