No Taxation without Representation

Today I got a council tax reminder notice saying that if I didn’t pay my late council tax within the next seven days I would be taken to court and incur an additional £95 court cost. It’s dire straights these days: I had to choose between paying the council tax or buying food this week. I chose food.

And speaking of food, has anyone else noticed it’s gone up? I dropped £12 today at Tescos for:

Toilet Paper
2 Fishes (where you have to skin, bone and chop off the head yourself ’cause it’s cheaper)
Honey (which PJ has in tea instead of sugar, which is bad for him)
2 apples
2 bagles

Anyway, called the Council to see if they could give me a reprieve. It’s an 0845 number, by the way, which I don’t understand ’cause it’s the government, right? At first the very nice lady said that she couldn’t help me because I’m not on income assistance. I told her that I couldn’t get on income assistance because I’m a foreigner and it’s illegal because of the visa and all. Eventually, she did help me. Gave me a 7 day extension before they take me to court.

The thing is that they didn’t have to help me at all because I’m not a voting citizen…I’m a foreigner, or did I say that already? I’m reminded that “no taxation without representation” was one of the reasons why American broke from this country to begin with. (All of you complaining about Boris…at least you got to vote.)

Then there’s the bank charges, but I don’t want to get into that yet. It’s too depressing.

You’re probably saying, “if you don’t like it then just go the hell home.” Well, honestly, at this point, I probably would. At least I can go on welfare and get food stamps back in the States. But because fuel prices are so high, I can’t afford the airfare.

4 Comments so far

  1. fain on May 6th, 2008 @ 8:17 pm

    Oh my! I also have a story to tell about Council Tax. I tried to get Council Tax Benefit. I am EU citizen, so I guess things were a bit easier for me. But the interesting thing was, when I really needed the Benefit (unemployed) I was not "habitually resident", BUT I had to pay Council Tax. When I started my job (the mention exactly the date, on which I started), I finally count as habitually resident and therefore could get it, but OH! shame! I earn money, and oh no, too much for the Council to be accepted … Grrrr! I read an article today about a woman, who refused to pay Council Tax, because the service didn’t show in her eyes. She waited 30 days for them to show up and arrest her. After that time she went into hiding at a friend. It sounded like she really waited and wanted to face it. But as they didn’t bother within those weeks, I guess she thought "well, SEE! you don’t do stuff! why should I pay for it?". I am leaving soon and I really can’t wait. That Council Tax thing fills me every time again with rage, when I have to face it. I only hope that I get the money back I paid to much (10 instalments DOES NOT equal the monthly Council Tax amount to pay, but they "are unable to send a new bill". So I have to lend them money and phone that 0845 number and hope that I get my money back.) (And don’t even get me started when I was waiting for months for my jobseeker’s allowance. [If you’re EU citizen you can transfer it for 3 months if you look for a job in another EU country ….])

  2. Daneeta Loretta (daneeta) on May 6th, 2008 @ 9:19 pm

    Thanks for your story. Council Tax sucks.

  3. davotoula on May 7th, 2008 @ 9:24 am

    Oh dear, a wee sad story. I hope things pick up so that you can afford BOTH food and council tax!

  4. Flora Graham (flobud) on May 7th, 2008 @ 8:59 pm

    Being foreign in the UK is massive pain in the buttox. Truefax.

    Every time I hear some story about how foreigners are being given all the goodies and the council houses I think, "where’s mine?" I just seem to get bills. I have a theory that making you bitter and hostile is part of the real Britification process. That citizen test is just a cover for making you more bitter (fee: £35 and rising.)

    Soon I get my UK passport and then I look forward to complaining lots and emigrating to Australia with all the other Brits.

    ps. Please don’t tell the Home Office I said this, heh.

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