Scottish Borders Council headquarters.Scottish Borders Council headquarters.
Scottish Borders Council headquarters.

Freeze on council tax for householders in the Scottish Borders is on the agenda

A freeze on council tax in the Scottish Borders for the forthcoming financial year is expected to be rubber-stamped next week.

The move comes after the Scottish Government’s cabinet secretary for finance, Kate Forbes, offered local authorities a share of an additional £90m to compensate councils that choose to freeze the financial levy in 2021/22, in recognition of the “unique pressures created by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic”.

If accepted, the Borders share of that fund would be almost £2m.

When members of Scottish Borders Council meet via videolink on Thursday, February 25, they will be recommended to endorse the one-off payment freeze.

A report to the committee says: “The Borders share of these resources total £1.955m, which is broadly equivalent to a three per cent increase in council tax product for the financial year 2021/22.

"The funding is provided on a one-off basis and to date there is no confirmation that the resources provided to freeze the council tax in 2021/22 will be included on a recurrent basis.

"The implication, should resources to freeze the council tax in 2021/22 not be base-lined in future settlements, is that a future council tax rise of three per cent would be enacted in 2022/23 to make up the shortfall before any funding could be raised to invest in the provision of services.”

If agreed, the applicable fee for each council tax band would be as follows:

Band A: £835.94

Band B: £975.26

Band C: £1,114.58

Band D: £1,253.91

Band E: £1,647.49

Band F: £2,037.60

Band G: £2,455.77

Band F: £3,072.07