Labour accused of planning ‘Tartan Tax’ Hammer Blow

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The SNP has accused Labour of threatening to hammer Scottish families with a double whammy of extra taxes in order to pay for ‘Labour’s recession’.

The accusation follows a parliamentary question from Labour MSP Lord Foulkes in which he called on the SNP’s Finance Secretary John Swinney to raise Scottish income tax levels in order to plug the spending gap.

The SNP slammed the calls saying that they would increase the burden on Scots families at a time when many will be facing hardship as a result of the looming cutbacks from Westminster.  The SNP accused Labour of planning to force Scottish households to pay for what they describe as Labour’s economic legacy.

Labour’s latest tax proposal comes only days after Holyrood leader Iain Gray admitted that his party wanted to increase council tax next year.

SNP MSP Kenneth Gibson who challenged Lord Foulkes on Labour’s plans in the Scottish Parliament said:
  
“Labour wants to use the tartan tax and put up the bills of hard pressed Scottish households.  Under Labour Scotland would be the highest taxed part of the UK.
  
“Making Scots families pay for Labour’s damning economic legacy is unacceptable.”

Mr Gibson also attacked Labour’s plans to increase council tax and confirmed that under the SNP the freeze would remain.

Mr Gibson added:
  
“Along with Iain Gray’s plans to put council tax up it is clear Labour want to hit hard working families for hundreds of pounds not help them.
  
“The SNP has kept council tax bills frozen for three years and want to do so again to help people through the tough times.  Unlike Labour we will not be putting up income tax or punishing families to pay for Labour’s economic legacy or to fill the gap left by Tory cuts.”

These latest calls from the controversial Labour MSP follow on from statements he made in September when he accused the Scottish government of wanting English taxpayers to pay for Scotland’s public services.

Then Lord Foulkes said:

“I’m fed up coming here and hearing the continual whine from the First Minister and John Swinney that they don’t have the fiscal powers.

“They have the powers to impose up to 3p on income tax. That would give them £1 billion, but they are not prepared to do it.

“What they really want is the English taxpayer to stump up for better services in Scotland.”

Figures from the Scottish Parliament Information Centre show someone on the average Scottish wage of £24,991 would see their taxes increased by £525.

  
1.      Figures from Spice on the impact of Labour’s tax increase on Scottish taxpayers.

Earnings 1p increase 2p increase 3p increase
£20,000 £125 £251 £376
£24,991 £175 £350 £525
£30,000 £225 £451 £676
£40,000 £325 £651 £976
£44,875 £374 £748 £1,122