The Council Tax freeze explained

By , 14/01/16

In tough financial times, the SNP in government has sought to provide relief to households by putting in place a freeze on increases in council tax.  Here’s what you need to know about the council tax freeze and how it works:

The council tax freeze is providing relief to households across Scotland

We have kept our promise to freeze the council tax in every budget of this parliament. All of Scotland’s council tax payers have benefited from the council tax freeze, which has provided much needed financial relief – particularly to vulnerable groups, including pensioners.

By the end of this Parliamentary term council tax will have been frozen for nine consecutive years, saving the average household £1,500 in total on a band D bill. By contrast, between 2007-08 and 2015-16, council tax has increased by 12% in England, and soared by 32% under Labour in Wales.

The SNP Scottish Government is fully-funding Scotland’s councils to freeze council tax

The SNP Scottish Government is committed to fully funding the council tax freeze. Scotland’s local authorities have received an extra £70 million per annum since 2008-09, to put the council tax freeze in place.

Analysis from the independent Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) has shown that the Council Tax freeze has been more than fully funded by the SNP Government. In fact, the research goes so far as to say that the Council Tax freeze has been “overfunded”.

We will bring forward proposals for reform of the unfair council tax system later this year

We believe the council tax system in Scotland is unfair and needs to be reformed. That’s why, along with our local government partners, we established Commission on Local Tax Reform, to consider replacement options. The Commission is made up from representatives from political parties and the finance, law and advice sectors and published its first report in December of last year. Later this year the Scottish Government will bring forward proposals for a fairer and more progressive system of local taxation.

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