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Sturgeon won’t rule out council tax rise

NICOLA STURGEON declined to rule out increasing council tax and water charges for single-person households yesterday.

At First Minister’s Questions, Labour MSP Jackie Baillie asked if Ms Sturgeon would commit to keeping the 25 per cent discount, which currently applies to one-person residences.

She said a consultation over whether state-owned Scottish Water would scrap the rebate would be received as “the thin end of the wedge” by struggling pensioners entitled to it.

Ms Sturgeon did not take the opportunity to rule out scrapping either reduction.

She said the proposal to axe the single-person discount was about funding a 50 per cent water discount for families with a full council tax rebate.

“The decisions we take when we take them will be progressive,” the First Minister insisted.

But Ms Baillie told the Star it was “deeply concerning” that a “cash grab” had not been ruled out.

“It is baffling that this SNP government believes that the way to fund an increase for some of the poorest is to remove benefits from those living alone on low and fixed incomes, who are equally struggling,” she said.

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