National and Devolved Politics

07.02.19

Edinburgh Council becomes first UK authority to introduce ‘tourist tax’

Councillors at Edinburgh City Council voted today to approve the first ever UK ‘tourist tax’ which will raise an estimated £14.6m annually.

The Transient Visitor Levy (TVL) scheme will include a flat £2 per-night room charge added to the price of a room in all properties for the first seven days of stay.

Although Edinburgh are the first local authority in the UK to introduce such a scheme, the new tax will not come into effect until after the Scottish Parliament has passed the enabling legislation, with the council now recommending the proposals to ministers and MSPs.

This follows the decision by the Scottish Government last week to give councils the powers to raise taxes by 4.79% without the requirement of holding a local referendum – up from 2.99% - as well as the introduction of a new workplace parking tax.

The decision came as the government met to decide the core local government settlement which will see an extra £90m for councils in Scotland and authorities shift to setting budgets for three years ahead.

One MSP called it the “most significant empowerment of local authorities since devolution” whilst another called it a “triple tax bombshell,” and the deal has paved the way for Edinburgh to announce the first TVL scheme in the UK.

It will apply to all paid-for accommodation, including Airbnbs, hotels, hostels, B&Bs and other short-term lets with only visitors staying in campsites being exempt.

The TVL will aim to raise finances to pay for the cost of mass tourism in the Scottish capital and other services and is estimated to bring in between £11.6m and £14.6m per year to Edinburgh.

However, it is not thought that parliament will pass the legislation enabling the levy to come into effect until next year.

MSP and finance secretary Derek Mackay originally set out the plans in December, and said he wanted to ensure local councils received a fair funding settlement despite further cuts from the UK government.

But a Tory finance spokesperson criticised the Scottish Government’s decision to pass the deal, claiming that Mackay and Nicola Sturgeon had “torn up promises.”

Image credit - Jane BarlowPA WirePA Images

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

public sector executive tv

more videos >

latest public sector news

‘Enough is enough’: Powys County Council speaks out against cuts and demands fair deal from government

18/02/2019‘Enough is enough’: Powys County Council speaks out against cuts and demands fair deal from government

A Welsh authority set to increase its council tax by nearly 10% has publicly spoken out about the unfair funding formula for councils, and has ur... more >
Plastic packaging tax and weekly food collections in plans for government overhaul of national waste system

18/02/2019Plastic packaging tax and weekly food collections in plans for government overhaul of national waste system

The government has launched plans to overhaul the country’s waste system, with packaging producers potentially being required to cover the ... more >
Supreme Court to hear care workers' case in £400m Mencap sleep-in battle

18/02/2019Supreme Court to hear care workers' case in £400m Mencap sleep-in battle

Low-paid social care workers have won the right to appeal against a decision not to pay minimum wage to carers performing ‘sleep-in’ ... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >
Newham LBC to sue RBS over £150m in LOBO loans

08/02/2019Newham LBC to sue RBS over £150m in LOBO loans

Newham London Borough Council is to sue the Royal Bank of Scotland over the terms of around £150m worth of LOBO bank-loans, making it the latest council to take legal action against banks o... more >
Edinburgh Council becomes first UK authority to introduce ‘tourist tax’

07/02/2019Edinburgh Council becomes first UK authority to introduce ‘tourist tax’

Councillors at Edinburgh City Council voted today to approve the first ever UK ‘tourist tax’ which will raise an estimated £14.6m annually. The Transient Visitor Levy (TVL)... more >

the raven's daily blog

Newcastle's 'twin cities'

18/02/2019Newcastle's 'twin cities'

Climate change is forcing cities to approach emergency situations differently – and Newcastle University, in partnership with Northumbrian Water, are looking at innovative methods to predict how a city will react in the future. Leading minds behind the project Chris Jones, Brett Cherry, and Professor Chris Kilsby tell more. Cities a... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

comment

Acas and the people's powerhouse

18/02/2019Acas and the people's powerhouse

Ahead of her speaking slot at this year’s EvoNorth, Acas chief executive Susan Clews assesses the current climate of workplaces and what ma... more >
Chris Painter: May's failing Brexit project

18/02/2019Chris Painter: May's failing Brexit project

Chris Painter, professor emeritus at Birmingham City University, examines the reasons why prime minister Theresa May’s approach to Brexit h... more >
Creating powerful partnerships across the North

18/02/2019Creating powerful partnerships across the North

Colin Bell, business growth director at the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), talks about why partnership across the North is key to... more >
Bolton and Wigan's strategic ICT partnership: Crossing borders together

18/02/2019Bolton and Wigan's strategic ICT partnership: Crossing borders together

Alison Hughes, assistant director of strategic ICT partnership at Bolton & Wigan councils, explains how the two councils are collaboratively ... more >

interviews

Digital innovation in the public sector: The future is now

17/12/2018Digital innovation in the public sector: The future is now

One of the public sector’s key technology partners has recently welcomed a new member to its team. Matt Spencer, O2’s head of public ... more >
Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need to invest in technology to help make better use of their resources. Bu... more >
New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

05/11/2018New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

The new chief executive of one of the new unitary authorities in Dorset has outlined his approach to culture and work with employees, arguing tha... more >
Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... more >

public sector focus

View all News