Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Lets call a spade a spade

Seemingly endless political excitement over the SNP proposals for a new form of tax - the consultation on such, launched this afternoon ... all the details can be accessed from here.

Putting all the arguments 'for' and 'against' what's being proposed to one side ... there's plenty of propaganda filling the blogosphere on that already! ... I have to say that I find the 'title' being applied to this proposed tax, just ever-so-slightly duplicitous.

It is not - by any stretch of the imagination - a Local Income Tax - it is a 3p levy on personal income that will be applied throughout all of Scotland. The monies collected would then be re-distributed to the 32 Scottish Local Authorities - see paragraphs 41 through to 44 here.

Do read those 4-short paragraphs and see if you agree that this is a national tax, that will be collected nationally, and will then be redistributed to Local Authorities. Personally, I'd respect the authors of these proposals a lot more if they just called it what it is.

If this is enacted as it stands, I'm afraid it will quite simply be another nail in the coffin of Local Government autonomy.

All rather ironic coming from Scottish Ministers who spend a fair amount of their waking-hours arguing for more fiscal autonomy for the political tier they work within.

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