8 out of 10 Scots ‘would benefit from Labour tax plans’

Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale visits Punjabi Junction on Leith Walk to learn how to make chapatis. Picture: Greg Macvean

Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale visits Punjabi Junction on Leith Walk to learn how to make chapatis. Picture: Greg Macvean

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Scrapping the council tax will mean eight out of ten Scots are better off than under the existing arrangements, Kezia Dugdale will claim as she accuses the SNP of failing to match her plans to “protect low and middle income families”.

The Scottish Labour leader, during a campaign visit in Glasgow today, will say that nearly two million households would be better off under her party’s policy of replacing the council tax with a form of local government tax based on property value.

Ms Dugdale’s believes her plan to scrap the council tax would reduce bills for 80 per cent of households, as a new poll suggested support for raising the top rate of income tax for those earning more than £150,000.

However, the survey for BBC Scotland also found support for keeping the rate of income tax at the same level as in England.

Respondents were asked to rank policy ideas on a scale of one to ten, with one meaning it was poor and should not be implemented and ten meaning it should be implemented immediately.

Scottish Labour’s policy of raising the top rate of income tax from 45p to 50p attracted a net score of 7.3.

The poll also found support for the Tory idea that income tax in Scotland should be kept the same as for people in England, a policy that scored 6.5.

Ms Dugdale will accuse the SNP of a “timid tinkering around the edges” which leaves Scottish council taxpayers “stuck in a system which is unfair and 25 years out of date”.

She will say: “Labour will abolish the unfair council tax and leave nearly 2 million households better off, with 80 per cent paying less than they do today. The SNP have had a decade to make good on their promise to scrap the unfair council tax and in the end bottled it.”

An SNP spokesman said: “Labour’s tax plans at this election involve hitting the lowest paid and making them carry the burden of Tory austerity, which is deeply unfair.”

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