Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

£15m raised from Perth and Kinross ratepayers to fund ‘national stealth tax’, say Lib Dems

The SNP’s changes, which come into force in April, will see those in more expensive homes paying more council tax.
The SNP’s changes, which come into force in April, will see those in more expensive homes paying more council tax.

Millions of pounds raised from Perth and Kinross council taxpayers will be spent in other parts of the country, according to Scottish Liberal Democrat research.

In what has been dubbed an SNP “national stealth tax”, the local authority would see £15m of extra cash it has collected locally through the Scottish Government’s council tax reforms crossing its borders to fund public services elsewhere.

Dundee could benefit to the tune of £17m and Fife could take in an extra £13m from the national pot, according to the analysis.

But Scottish Government insiders said it is a crude analysis and that no council would lose any cash, although some will benefit more than others.

The flight of cash from Perthshire is caused by the SNP’s changes to council tax, which involves raising charges for higher-end properties and clawing back proceeds centrally to pay for closing the education attainment gap across Scotland.

Willie Rennie, the Scottish Liberal Democrats leader, said the figures, which cover the next five years, “end any pretence that local taxation is for local services”.

“People rightly expect their council tax to go towards delivering local services. They will be outraged that the Scottish Government, too timid to increase the taxes it directly controls, is demanding local authorities do the dirty work so it can be seen spending the cash.”

He added: “This national stealth tax shows complete contempt for local autonomy and is a fundamentally unfair way to generate the funds that our schools so desperately need.”

The SNP’s changes, which come into force in April, will see those in more expensive homes paying more council tax.

For those in Band E properties their bill will increase by 7.5%, rising to 22.5% in Band H.

Those in Band A-D homes will see no change in their bills, unless councils choose to implement the 3% maximum rise in the overall rate.

The hikes for higher bands will raise £100m a year, say the Scottish Government, which will be redistributed based on the number of children entitled to free school meals in each area.

A spokeswoman from the SNP-led Perth and Kinross Council declined to comment.

A Scottish Government spokeswoman disputed the Lib Dem analysis, saying it is “simply not the case that any council will have less money as a result of these reforms”.

“Our reforms to the Council Tax will protect household incomes, make local taxation fairer and ensure local authorities continue to be properly funded while becoming more accountable,” she said.

“There will be no change for three out of four Scottish households in terms of how much council tax they pay as a result of these reforms.

“These reforms will play their part in improving the life chances of Scotland’s young people, giving our children the best possible start in life and ensuring a more prosperous nation.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]

More from The Courier Scottish politics team

More from The Courier