PAC calls for Scottish tax autonomy

Currently, the Scottish parliament receives a block grant from Westminster, in line with English spending, and has the power to raise or reduce the basic rate of income tax by 3p in the pound, but has yet to use this power.

But PAC chairman David Davies said Scotland should have powers to raise not only income tax, but council tax and Excise revenues, as well as have control of 90% of North Sea oil revenues.

The PAC comments come as the Scottish Executive prepares to offer teachers north of the border higher salaries than their English counterparts and free personal care for the elderly.

The personal care service is not offered by the Department of Health, and will cost hundreds of millions of pounds.

Scottish Tory leader David McLetchie immediately disowned Davies’ comments and said a Conservative government would leave the present arrangement unchanged.

But the Scottish national party welcomed the PAC’s position. It wants to set up a special fund to invest oil and gas revenues to provide an income stream of up to Pounds 5bn for an independent Scotland, as Norway has already done.


Scottish tax powers may be illegal

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