Slight problem

In her recent speech on taxation (your report, 2 September), Nicola Sturgeon maintains the tax resulting from the SNP’s Land and Buildings Transaction Tax increases “slightly” for higher value properties.

After some initial market turmoil when the new tax regime was introduced, we must wait to discover whether the Nationalists’ replacement for stamp duty assists those trying to step on to the housing ladder or indeed ­actually manages to increase the overall tax yield.

What is more concerning for Scottish taxpayers is Ms Sturgeon’s use of the word “slightly”. Taxation, for example, increases for properties priced at £350,000 or over by more than 11 per cent up to 75.8 per cent band for properties priced at £750,000. Whether or not you believe this to be appropriate, can we really say these are “slight” increases?

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Ms Sturgeon is both old and fortunate enough to have been educated before the SNP began to inflict eight years’ damage on our education system so arguably we mustn’t doubt her literacy and numeracy skills. So do we, therefore, question her judgment?

If the First Minister genuinely believes Land and Buildings Transaction Tax increases are slight, then hold on to your hats, Scottish taxpayers, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Martin Redfern

Royal Circus, Edinburgh