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Published, 29 September 2017

Move to exempt care leavers from Council Tax

North Ayrshire Council wants to be the first local authority in Scotland to exempt care experienced young people from paying Council Tax.

Scottish Councils currently do not have the power to introduce Council Tax exemptions. However, the Council is calling on the Scottish Government to give them delegated powers.

To allow the Council to make the change, the Scottish Government would have to amend the Local Government Finance Act 1992 or implement new Council Tax exemption regulations.

Speaking on the issue, the Leader of North Ayrshire Council and the Council’s Finance Portfolio Holder, Joe Cullinane said;

“One of the most important roles Councillors hold is as a corporate parent to our young people in care.
“This is a group of young people with talent, skills and ambitions just like their peers. However, we know the many challenges they face in being able to fulfil their potential. It is therefore our task to provide the right mix of support and opportunities to allow young people in care to achieve their life goals.
“Here in North Ayrshire we have taken steps to put care experienced young people at the heart of what we do but we can go further. There are significant financial pressures on young people leaving care including Council Tax and one way we could help financially would be to exempt them from that. 
“Scottish Councils do not currently have the powers to implement such an exemption. We would like to become the first Scottish Council to deliver a Council Tax exemption for our care experienced young people and we are therefore calling on the Scottish Government to give us the necessary powers to do so.”