First Minister Nicola Sturgeon yesterday announced that the nine-year council tax freeze will come to an end next year, meaning families living in the country’s most expensive homes will be paying up to £520 per annum.
Properties in council tax bands E to H will help generate £100 million a year. This additional revenue will be invested primarily in education.
Under the proposals, the average band E household will pay around £2 more per week, and the average household in the highest band will pay around £10 more a week.
The 75% of Scottish households that live in bands A to D it appears will be unaffected by this change to the council tax band system. Sturgeon said that the 54,000 households living in bands E to H on low incomes – more than one third of which are pensioner households – would be entitled to an exemption from the changes through the council tax reduction scheme.
The reform would also provide additional support to families on low incomes across all council tax bands.
Does this mean that Scotland gets the reputation as a ‘high tax’ country? With most Scots families facing the council tax hike combined with the land and buildings transaction tax (LBTT), people fear that this could make Scotland a less attractive place for wealthy people to live and buy.
Sturgeon added “The Commission on Local Tax Reform made clear that the present system could be made fairer. We are choosing to do this in a reasonable and balanced way that will also generate £100 million of additional revenue to invest in schools.”
For more information on Sturgeon’s government plans for local taxation, should the SNP be re-elected on the 5th May 2016, click here
What are your thoughts about this proposed shake-up of the council tax system in Scotland? We would love to hear your thoughts.