Scottish Landfill Tax (West Dunbartonshire)

– in the Scottish Parliament at on 29 September 2022.

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Photo of Jackie Baillie Jackie Baillie Labour

The Scottish Landfill Tax (Prescribed Landfill Site Activities) Amendment Order 2022 was approved on 7 July. At the time, the Government and Revenue Scotland advised that there were no financial implications for councils and no expected increase in tax. That appears to have been incorrect.

Barr Environmental Ltd, which has contracts for landfill with West Dunbartonshire Council, Argyll and Bute Council and Inverclyde Council, is increasing the cost per tonne as a result of the order, following discussion with Revenue Scotland. That will cost West Dunbartonshire Council alone £1.5 million extra. It simply does not have that money.

Will the First Minister consider whether the order can be paused while the issue is investigated? Time is pressing, and, unless the Government can rectify the perceived error, the contract might end in a couple of weeks and rubbish will be piling up on the streets of West Dunbartonshire.

Photo of Nicola Sturgeon Nicola Sturgeon Scottish National Party

First, Revenue Scotland operates independently of Scottish ministers in its role as our tax authority. It would not be proper for me to comment on what is an individual taxpayer dispute. I will ask the relevant minister whether more information can be provided and, if so, to write to Jackie Baillie.

I can say that our view is that the recent amendment order does not alter or expand the scope of the Scottish landfill tax; rather, the order provides additional confirmation by making it explicit that particular landfill site activities are within its intended scope.