Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Government told last August about police reform VAT bill

The Scottish Government was told in August 2011 the new single police force would have to pay millions in VAT unless they amended the funding structure, according to today's Herald.

Letters show officials knew before the public consultation on the merging of the country's eight police forces about the VAT liability, and were told over the following months that paying it was avoidable if the structure of Scotland's new police service was slightly amended.

However, officials refused and instead asked HMRC to amend the legislation to avoid £22 million-a-year VAT bill.

Dave Watson, Head of Bargaining and Campaigns for UNISON Scotland, said: "It is now clear the Scottish Government understood the VAT exemption would be lost before the September consultation that set out their preferred option of centralisation. Less than transparent, more a case of burying bad news. The Scottish taxpayer will now pay the price."

Read the full article in today's Herald or online at: http://bit.ly/MkBvpa

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