Holyrood launches new Scottish tax collection

John Swinney welcomed the figures. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

John Swinney welcomed the figures. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

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THE first national taxes to be introduced by a Scottish Parliament in more than 300 years are being collected from today.

The new tax authority, Revenue Scotland, is now accepting tax returns - making history as the first national administrator of solely Scottish taxes since 1707.

For the first time in 300 years...Scotland is able to collect and manage some of our own taxes

John Swinney

A new levy on property sales, the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) - which replaces stamp duty in Scotland - comes into force today, at the same time as power over landfill tax is transferred to Holyrood.

The power to administer LBTT and Scottish Landfill Tax (SLfT) follows the passage of the 2012 Scotland Act.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney described it as a “historic” day.

“For the first time in 300 years, with the launch of Revenue Scotland, Scotland is able to collect and manage some of our own taxes,” he said.

“Years of preparation and consultation have gone into ensuring this independent agency is ready to manage these two new taxes as of today.”

He went on: “Our tax decisions have been driven by the principle that taxes should be proportionate to the ability to pay.

“The legal, financial, leadership and operational tax experts at Revenue Scotland have worked incredibly hard to ensure a smooth transition today for taxpayers and I’m very grateful to them all.”

Revenue Scotland is believed to have worked closely with Registers of Scotland, Sepa and HMRC over the last 18 months in preparation for the transition.

Murdoch Macleod, Revenue Scotland programme director, said: “It has been a genuine privilege to oversee the delivery of Revenue Scotland as the tax authority that will administer Scotland’s first tax collection system for 300 years.

“The passion, commitment and dedication of every single member of my team has been inspirational and humbling. It has taken a huge amount of work, collaborating with solicitors and landfill operators, supporting organisations and HMRC to deliver this programme of work on time and to specification, and it is a testament to the professionalism of everyone involved that Revenue Scotland is now ready to collect and manage the taxes and deliver the highest level of service for Scotland.”

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