Thomas Bridge 14 August 2014

Grant councils more power over tax, report says

Grant councils more power over tax, report says image

Councils should be free to raise at least half of their incomes through local taxation, a report on Scotland’s local authorities has concluded.

An independent review has concluded communities and town halls should be given power over local taxation and spending in order to better meet regional priorities.

While not promoting higher or lower taxation and spending, the Commission on Strengthening Local Democracy has pushed for such decisions to be made locally.

The Effective democracy report said handing stronger powers to communities could help combat the ‘intolerable’ levels of inequality currently seen in Scotland.

Describing Scotland as ‘one of the most centralised countries in Europe’, commission chair, Cllr David O’Neill said the shift needed to be ‘decisive and far-reaching, not a trickle of power to councils, then to communities, all controlled from above’.

It was suggested that councils could receive less money from central government yet have the power to raise funds. Suggestions included granting local government ownership of all property taxes including stamp duty.

‘This is not just about making democracy stronger, vital as that is. It is also about improving lives in the best ways possible. While outcomes have got better for many in Scotland, over the last 50 years the gap between the best and worst off has widened,’ Cllr O’Neill added.

‘Quite simply, we are depriving communities of their enormous potential and if we don’t do something soon, inequalities in Scotland will start to overtake many third world countries.

‘That is why a major transformation in local democracy should appeal to anyone committed to better and more equal outcomes for people in Scotland.’

Overcoming the barriers to Commercial Card use image

Overcoming the barriers to Commercial Card use

Want to reap the benefits of Commercial Cards but coming up against some challenges? James Sykes, Head of Commercial Cards, Lloyds Bank and David Legg, Head of Corporate Card Products, Lloyds Bank, discuss how the payments industry is helping organisations unlock their true value.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Senior Project Manager

Leicestershire County Council
Up to £50,823 per annum
The role of this post is to oversee the project management, development and implementation of the County Council’s Major Transport Projects.. Leicestershire
Recuriter: Leicestershire County Council

Programme and Change Delivery Manager (Spatial Planning and Urban Design)

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£43,833 - £53,115 Depending on skills and experience
Are you a change delivery manager with expertise in England’s local government spatial planning and urban design sector? Wandsworth, London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Early Years Practitioner

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£26,544 - £30,618 per annum pro rata
This is a diverse area and we have high aspirations for all our children, starting with... Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recuriter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Programme Manager - Association of Directors of Children’s Services

City of York Council
£50,000 to £60,000 pa
This role will help to shape an annual SLI work plan and variously oversee, facilitate, commission or directly deliver and... York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

School Wellbeing Worker

City of York Council
£27,614 to £30,602 per annum
The role will involve providing schools with consultation and advice, training, direct work in... York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue