- 24 Jan 2019
Attendees and apologies
- Ian Storrie, Scottish Government (Chair)
- Kevin Fraser, IRRV
- Jonathan Sharma, CoSLA
- Alan Puckrin, CoSLA
- Stuart Mackinnon, FSB
- Graeme McLean, Scotmid
- Ken McCormack, Montague-Evans
- Ian Milton, SAA
- Graeme Strachan, SAA
- Brian Rogan, CBRE
- Jim Mcafferty, IRRV
- Anouk Berthier, Scottish Government
- James Messis, Scottish Government
- Reme Diaz, Scottish Government
- Philip Duffy, Scottish Government
Items and actions
1. Minutes of previous meeting
3. Feedback from Billing Sub-Group
4. Feedback from Appeals Sub-Group
5. Non-legislative recommendations:
- ‘road map’ for future rates changes
- provision of better information
- relief recipients to be published
- employ rateable value product finder
- councils to make refund payments faster
- all relief awards to be checked for errors
6. Next steps
Note of key points made in discussion
- The group discussed the consultation and the closure date of the 17th of September and dates of their intention to submit their response
- The group was updated on the progress of the billing sub-group and it was agreed that copies of the mock NDR bill would be provided to the group. It was highlighted that there are certain obstacles facing the delivery of the rates bill. Namely, the different IT contracts of the different councils.
- The group discussed the progress of the Appeals subgroup and some of the key changes identified in the minutes from the recent meeting. The group agreed that further consideration would need to be given to, fees, the prospect that appeals may result in rateable values increasing as well as decreasing, and the incentives of public sector appeals.
- The group highlighted examples where certain ratepayers experienced delays in receiving the refund they were entitled to. Members of the group had experience of inconsistencies among local authorities. It was agreed that a letter would go out to councils from Scottish Government encouraging appropriate practice for refunds.
- The group discussed ‘roadmaps’ and ‘provision of better information’ and the need for clear, concise and accurate information on government and council websites. The group discussed the need for the website to provide a ‘roadmap’ of NDR changes in the future. The group expressed their desire for an up to date online NDR calculator.
- The group discussed the prospect of publishing the recipients of reliefs. They discussed what ratepayer information would be acceptable to publish. The group agreed that there was a need to publish this information. Further work would need to be done to understand what information councils hold or list before publishing could be considered.
- The group discussed the rateable value product finder and the role that a ‘spatial scotland’ system might play in delivering this function.