Notes to the Account
1. The "Non Domestic Rating Account" for each financial year is audited by Audit Scotland appointed by the Auditor General for Scotland. It shows, as items of account (rather than actual cash), sums paid to and from the account during 2017-18 (Schedule 12, paragraph 7). Surpluses at the end of the year are carried forward by debiting the account for the year and crediting the next year's account. Deficits at the end of the year are carried forward to the following year by crediting the account for the year and debiting the next year's account (Schedule 12, paragraph 8) e.g. this balance will be offset against expenditure within financial year 2017-18. This ensures, that when years are taken together, all non domestic rates paid to Scottish Ministers are redistributed to authorities.
2. Each levying authority is required to calculate the non domestic rating contribution for the year before it begins (the provisional amount; Schedule 12, paragraph 11(2) as amended by paragraph 176(19c) of Schedule 13 to the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act 1994) and the authority is required to do a final calculation after the year ends (Schedule 12, paragraph 11(5)). The provisional amount is paid during the year in such instalments as Scottish Ministers direct (Schedule 12, paragraph 11(4)). Contributions from authorities in respect of the provisional amount for 2017-18 totalled £2,844 million.
3. Scottish Ministers paid out the Distributable Amount of £2,665.8 million for 2017-18 (Schedule 12, paragraph 9) as set out in the Local Government Finance (Scotland) Order 2017. The Distributable Amount is paid to authorities in proportion to each local authority's 2016-17 mid-year non domestic rates income return net of any prior year adjustments.
4. Due to the nature of the non domestic rates returns cycle the interim returns for any given year are received after the Account is prepared. By 31 March 2018 all interim payments (£47.2 million) and interim receipts (£24.5 million) in respect of interim adjustments to the provisional contributable amounts for 2016-17 had been completed. They are, therefore, included within this Account.
5. By 31 March 2018 final payments (£0.2 million) and final receipts (£0.1 million) from all 32 local authorities, following the end year calculations, had also been received for 2016-17.
6. The figures for 2017-18 are net of the sums totalling £6.4 million retained by local authorities under the Business Rates Incentivisation Scheme in respect of the year 2015-16.
7. The accounts are prepared on a receipts and payments basis in accordance with the requirements of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.
8. This account although serving a specific purpose has a direct link to and from the following publications. The Scottish Budget: Draft Budget 2018-19  ; The Scottish Government's Medium Term Financial Strategy  ; the outcome of the 2017 Non Domestic Rates Revaluation 2017  ; and the Scottish Government's response to the Barclay Review of Non-Domestic Rates  .
Director General Education, Communities and Justice
12 September 2018