Fife Council wrote off more than £2million in unpaid council tax last year. Latest figures show that Scotland’s third-largest local authority had written off £2,106,525 during 2016/17, up from £1,879,113 in 2015/16.

Les Robertson, head of revenue and commercial services at Fife Council, said: “In Fife we have seen year-on-year improvements in the overall collection rates for Council Tax and for many years we have achieved this at the lowest cost of collection in Scotland.”

“Council Tax has an overall collection rate amounting to 98 percent within-year collection rates approaching 96 percent and we constantly strive to improve all collections. We have moved the collection service to a modern delivery environment with the provision of online accounts, increased payment methods and also the setting up of a dedicated in-house debt team to concentrate on the collection of ‘hard debt.”

Taxpayers’ Alliance Chief Executive John O’Connell said: “It’s not acceptable for those taxpayers who pay their tax fully and on time to subsidise those who do not. At the same time, it is not enough for the council to have to write off unpaid tax year after year, without reducing their spending. If people really cannot afford to pay, that should be a sign to the council that tax is too high, and they should reduce the terrible burden it places on people.”

Source: Dunfermline press