Today’s announcement on local tax means that the SNP have broken their promise to abolish the council tax.
In their 2007 and 2011 manifestos the SNP promised to scrap the council tax, and Nicola Sturgeon attacked Labour proposals to change the way banding works. Today, after ten years of attacking the council tax, the SNP government have simply decided to keep it whilst announcing changes to existing banding.
In the long term, the SNP need to deliver more clarity on the assignation of income tax to local authorities, with serious questions over whether the proposals are fair.
Scottish Labour Public Services spokesperson Jackie Baillie said:
“Nicola Sturgeon has broken the promise she was elected on.
“The SNP promised to abolish council tax back in 2007 and attacked Labour’s proposals to change the way banding worked. Yet that is exactly what the SNP Government has announced today. It has taken the SNP a decade to deliver tinkering round the edges rather than real reform.
“In the longer term the SNP’s plan to assign rates of income tax to local authorities seems unfair given the huge difference between the amount of income tax paid between areas, and it will do little to encourage economic development in cities where large sections of the workforce come from neighbouring local authorities.
“Nicola Sturgeon says she wants to invest more in education, yet she is cutting the budget for schools. Faced with a choice between using the powers we have to invest in the future or carrying on with the SNP’s cuts to schools, we will use the powers we have.
“Scottish Labour will set out our fairer plans to reform the system in the coming weeks