Table 1: Council Tax billed and received: Scotland
|Year to which bill refers||Net amount billed (£000s)||Amount received (£000s) as at 31 March 2015||Amount uncollected (£000s) as at 31 March 2015||Percentage received as at 31 March 2015*|
|Latest Year to||31 March 2015||2014-15||2,076,232||1,980,986||95,246||95.4|
|1993-94 to 1995-96||2,798,881||2,698,695||100,185||96.4|
|Total for previous years||1993-94 to 2013-14||32,291,532||31,229,288||1,062,244||96.7|
|Total for all years to||31 March 2015||1993-94 to 2014-15||34,367,765||33,210,275||1,157,490||96.6|
Source: Information supplied by Councils to Scottish Government on the statistical return Council Tax and Community Charge Receipts (CTRR)
*Note that years prior to 2014-15 are closer to final collection rates as councils have had longer to collect late payments. The 2014-15 collection rate is understandably lower since it is effectively the in-year collection rate (i.e. before any late payments).
All figures are NET of discounts (e.g. single persons discount), exemptions and surcharges (although not all councils can exclude surcharges - see below). They exclude Council Tax Benefit/Reduction and Water and Sewerage Charges, and are BEFORE any amounts written off for bad or doubtful debt. They reflect any correction to liabilities following billing.
- Up to and including 1995-96, the figures for amounts billed and collected include Council Water Charges.
- From 2005-06 onwards, the figures include additional amounts in respect of reduced Second Home/Long Term Empty property discounts.
- Dumfries and Galloway has not provided any figures before 1996-97.
- Councils are asked to exclude surcharges, although this is not always possible. For years prior to 1996-97, surcharges have been included for Aberdeenshire, Argyll and Bute, East Lothian, East Renfrewshire, Eilean Siar, Fife, North Ayrshire, Renfrewshire, Scottish Borders and Shetland Islands.
In Table 1, the net Council Tax billed across Scotland and the amount received by 31 March 2015 are shown dating back to 1993-94 when Council Tax was introduced. The years 1993-94 to 1995-96 were before the re-organisation of local government in Scotland, and the data for these years are combined. The reorganisation had a number of implications for authorities, and so the figures prior to 1995-96 cannot be directly compared to those in later years under continuing authorities.
The net amount billed rose sharply from £1.002 billion in 1996-97 to £1.933 billion (in cash terms) in 2007-08, principally due to increases in Council Tax levels, but with an additional smaller increase due to growth in the tax base (mainly due to an increase in the number of dwellings). In 2007-08 the Scottish Government introduced a freeze in the Council Tax, and this is reflected in the data, where the net amount billed flattens off after 2007-08. The small increases observed after 2007-08 are due to growth in the tax base only, as a result of changes in the number and pattern of use of dwellings, as well as changes in household composition and awarding of Council Tax Benefit/Reduction. This pattern is shown in Chart 1. Band D Council Tax levels each year are shown at: http://www.gov.scot/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Local-Government-Finance/DatasetsCouncilTax/BandDCouncilTax1516
It should be noted that Table 1 shows the amount and percentage collected as at 31 March 2015. For earlier years there has been a comparatively long time to collect any late payments, whereas for more recent years (particularly 2014-15), there has been less time to collect late payments. This is the main reason why the 'percentage received at 31 March 2015' data show slightly lower percentages received for the later years. For the earlier years, it is unlikely that much more Council Tax will be collected hence, for these years, the percentages received are close to final collection rates. Excluding the effect on later years described above, no clear trend is seen in percentage received with all years before 2013-14 showing percentages received of between 96.3% and 97.1% (including the combined period 1993-94 to 1995-96).
Email: Dave Sorensen