The Scottish Government has announced that its council tax increases will go into effect next month, as the country heads into its biggest year-on-year rise in a generation.
The total increase in council tax is £6,353bn, which is £1,973 per household.
Council tax is set to rise by 1.6 per cent for 2017-18, while a 3 per cent rise in council levies for 2018-19 will be announced at a later date.
More than half of Scotland’s councils have already announced the changes, with the other Scottish cities of Aberdeen, Dumfries and Galloway having to make their own announcement on their own.
A total of 5,600 councils in Scotland have already introduced council tax rise, with more than 6,000 councils in the Scottish Borders set to follow suit.
Council tax increases in ScotlandThe Scottish Government said it would take the opportunity to highlight the benefits of the levy, with Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Chris Grayling, calling it “an important boost for people across the country”.
“The increase in Scottish council tax will help to make our communities more resilient and our cities more prosperous.”
It is right that council tax in Scotland should be paid for by people who are paying for it,” he added.
Mr Grayling said council tax would help the Scottish Government raise money from the £12bn Scotland’s National Insurance contributions, which currently make up around 12 per cent of council tax.”
We need to continue to build on the strong economic growth of Scotland, and we are confident that a strong, fair and transparent Scottish council levy will ensure we are in the right position to deliver the prosperity we need,” he said.”
The Scottish government’s policy for council tax has been to increase council tax across the whole of Scotland and will be consistent across all Scottish council areas.
“Council tax has always been a strong tool in delivering long-term economic recovery.”
However, we also recognise that the cost of the rise is now rising again, with councils facing increasing pressures as they continue to implement the latest financial and structural changes to their budgets.
“There are also ongoing uncertainties around the new administration of the Scottish parliament and there is no doubt that the Scottish government will have to address this issue if it is to deliver any sustainable economic recovery.”
Council tax rises in ScotlandAs of January 1, councils across Scotland will be charged for their council tax and will have the option of applying to extend it for a further year.
There will also be a two-year transitional period before the rise in 2017-19, in which councils will have a chance to apply for a rise of 2 per cent.
Council Tax Rates in ScotlandThis chart shows the council tax rates across Scotland in 2017 and 2018.
Council taxes in Scotland in 2018 are currently at their highest since 2009, when they hit £1.9bn.
The average council tax rate in Scotland has been rising steadily since 2009.
However, the rise has now reached £6bn, with most council tax levies going up by less than 2 per a cent.
The Scottish National Audit Office (SNAP) has reported that council taxes are the most popular part of the budget in Scotland, with almost 50 per cent paying for their own expenditure.
This means that the biggest spenders, including councils and councils in England, are also being hit the hardest.
“It’s no surprise that the highest rate of council taxation is found in Scotland,” Mr Grayling added.
“A strong Scottish government and a strong council tax levy will continue to deliver good public services and provide a boost for local economies.”
What’s more, the increase in the rate will help councils cut their bills.
Councils in Scotland will see an average increase of £2,845 in their council taxes by the end of 2019, with council tax going up £2.6bn in 2020-21.
It will then be £2bn in 2021-22, £2 billion in 2022-23 and £2b in 2019-20.
By 2020-20, council tax tax will be up to £4,000 for all councils in Britain, with an average rise of £3,500.
What you need to know about council taxThe average Scottish council will see a 3.4 per cent increase in their bill next year.
Council levies are set to increase by 3 per per cent next yearThe Scottish Budget Committee has been considering proposals to increase the council levy from the current level of £12.50 per household, up to a maximum of £15 per household by 2019-2020.
According to the Scottish Parliament, this will mean that council levys will increase by 2.4 percentage points per household next year, which means that they will have increased by £3.2bn by 2019.
Council Taxes are a part of a wider package of tax cuts announced by the Scottish National Government in its Budget this week