Responding to news that the First Minister wants to freeze council tax, Poverty Alliance director Peter Kelly said: “Progressive taxation is essential to allow for the investment in the public services that help create and sustain a just economy. It is disappointing then that the Scottish Government has decided to shelf plans to reform Council Tax and instead freeze this regressive tax.
“The ongoing cost of living crisis means that more help is needed for people who are struggling, but those who are on the lowest incomes will gain little from this freeze on council tax. Instead the freeze will put further pressure on local services, services that people on low incomes disproportionately rely on.
“The First Minister reminded us of a range of policies already introduced to help address poverty – including the Scottish Child Payment, free bus travel for young people. These are important policies that help address poverty. However, we needed to hear more from the First Minister on how his vision for ending child poverty will be realised in the future.
“People with experience of poverty attending the First Minister’s summit on poverty earlier this year called on him to ‘be brave’ when addressing poverty. Being brave on Council Tax means taking forward plans for change to the highest council tax bands and making the necessary steps to end this regressive tax.”