Table 5: Percentage of Council Tax received as at 31 March each year, by year to which the bill refers: Scotland (1)
|Year to which bill refers|
|Percentage received as at year end (31 March)||2014-15||97.1||97.0||96.9||96.9||96.7||96.7||96.8||96.7||96.5||96.2||95.4|
Sources: Information supplied by Councils to the Scottish Government on the CTRR statistical return, Statutory Performance Indicators published by Audit Scotland
(1) All figures are NET of discounts (e.g. single persons discount), exemptions and surcharges. The figures exclude Council Tax Benefit/Reduction and Water and Sewerage Charges. They are before any amounts written off for bad or doubtful debt and reflect any correction to liabilities following billing.
(2) 2005-06 onwards - Percentages received include additional amounts in respect of reduced Second Home/Long Term Empty property discounts.
Table 4 gives a further representation of how in-year collection has improved over the last decade, from 92.7% for Scotland as a whole in 2004-05 to 95.4% in 2014-15. Conversely, the percentages of Council Tax being collected after each billing year have fallen sharply, from 4.4% for the 2004-05 billing year to 1.0% for the 2013-14 billing year. This pattern is a direct consequence of two factors - there is less Council Tax still left to collect, and less time has elapsed to collect it in (e.g. the 1.0% collected after 2013-14 is over a period of one year only).
Table 5 shows an alternative presentation of in-year and subsequent collection rates. The lower diagonal shows the in-year collection rate for Scotland as a whole and the table should be read by selecting a column and reading upwards. For example, for billing year 2004-05 (the left-most column of figures) the in-year collection rate was 92.7%. By the end of the next year (2005-06), the collection rate had risen to 94.9%. It had risen to 95.6% by the end of 2006-07, then more slowly to 97.1% by 2014-15. This pattern is shown in Chart 3.
Taking these collection rates together, the overall pattern for Scotland is:
- In-year collection is now over 95%.
- A further 1% or so is collected in the following year.
- 'Final' collection can reasonably be expected to exceed 97%.
Email: Dave Sorensen