COUNCILLORS have discussed the 'uncomfortable' options that could be introduced to fund 'crisis-ridden' adult social care.

A national consultation was launched by the Local Government Association (LGA) – which has released its own green paper in advance of official Government proposals – to seek the views of the public.

The consultation closes next Wednesday.

The LGA estimates that adult social care services in England and Wales face an annual funding gap of £3.5 billion by 2025.

The protecting the most vulnerable policy committee discussed the situation regarding the Government’s anticipated green paper during Tuesday's meeting at the Town Hall.

Steve Peddie, the council’s executive director for families and wellbeing, highlighted the 'uncomfortable' options that could be brought in to fund adult social care as it reaches breaking point.

The LGA's findings will be used to help influence the Government’s own green paper and its spending plans.

Possible solutions to paying for adult social care outlined in the consultation include increasing income tax for taxpayers of all ages – a 1p rise on the basic rate could raise £4.4 billion in 2024-25.

Other possibilities include increasing national insurance, introducing a social care premium and allowing councils to increase council tax further – a 1 per cent rise would generate £285 million in 2024-25.

During Tuesday's meeting, committee member Cllr Stefan Krizanac (LD – Westbrook) said: "One of the things that I'm interested in is what did we learn from the history.

"In the past, I know in some communities, in other parts of the world, they have very cohesive care of their elderly in the community – and the cost, per person, to be cared for is much, much less.

"In the ward that I represent, I am seeing residents that have their fathers, mothers, grandparents living with them in their houses and they take care of them."

He also highlighted the prospect of tax breaks for residents who have elderly relatives living in their household to 'alleviate the pressure on our system'.

"We, as a council, will not have to pay so much money to look after that individual and the national Government, also, will not have to worry about that person being in a hospital, or other places, because the family will take care of them,” he added.

Cllr Krizanac was advised to feed his views into the consultation.

The LGA’s green paper consultation can be viewed online at