Scottish Budget 2018: key points

Written by Staff reporter on 14 December 2017 in Inside Politics

An overview of some of the key points in the 2018/19 Scottish budget including changes to income tax and the public sector pay cap

Derek Mackay on his way to deliver the budegt statement with Nicola Sturgeon - Image credit: PA Images


Basic rate of income tax frozen at 20 per cent

Two new income tax bands created, a 19 per cent starter rate for earnings between £11,850 and £13,850 and a 21 per cent intermediate rate for earnings between £24,001 and £44,243

Higher rate and additional rates to go up 1p in the pound to 41 per cent and 46 per cent respectively

First-time buyers to be exempt from land and buildings transaction tax (LBTT) on house purchases up to £175,000

No business rates for new and improved properties for one year and no new-build property enters business rates until it is occupied

Business rates poundage increase capped at CPI inflation

Small business bonus scheme protected

Accepting Barclay recommendations in full, except for charity relief, which will not be withdrawn from universities and council arms’-length external organisations (ALEOS)


Public sector pay

One per cent public sector pay cap to be lifted in Scotland

Public sector workers earning under £30,000 to get at least a three per cent pay rise

Public sector workers earning over £30,000 to get a two per cent pay rise, capped at a maximum of £1,600 for those earning over £80,000

Economy and infrastructure

£4bn of funding for infrastructure

An increase of £270m for the economy portfolio, as part of the £2.4bn investment in education and skills

A 70 per cent increase in investment in business research and development, taking it from £22m to £37m

£10m for the new south of Scotland enterprise agency

Doubling the funding for city deals to £122m

The first £70m of a £150m new Building Scotland Fund to support house building, low carbon commercial property and research and development

£340m for initial capitalisation of the Scottish Investment Bank

£600m over four years for 100 per cent superfast broadband coverage, with procurement for the R100 superfast broadband rollout to start immediately

£18m for a national manufacturing institute

Culture spending to increase by nearly 10 per cent to £166.8m

£10m for a new Scottish screen unit



Health budget increased by over £400m

£110m for reform of GP services and primary care

£17m for mental health services

£550m support for health and social care integration


Education and early years

£2.4bn for colleges, universities, enterprise and skills bodies, with £1.8bn going to colleges and universities

Increasing the Attainment Scotland Fund to £179m, with £120m to go direct to headteachers through the Pupil Equity Fund

£243m for early years, particularly to fund training of early years workers and building of new nurseries


Local government and housing

£10.5bn funding for Scottish councils, of which £9.6bn is revenue and £876m capital

Cap on council tax rises kept at three per cent

£756m towards building of affordable homes, part of a £3bn investment to 2021

£10m for an Ending Homelessness Together fund, part of a £50m investment over five years

The first investment of a £50m tackling child poverty fund



£20m increase to the Police Scotland revenue budget

£5.5m for transformation for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service


Environment and transport

£137m investment in energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation

£40m more for active travel, making the total £80m, which will include walking and cycling infrastructure

£60m for a low carbon innovation fund

£1.2bn for transport infrastructure, including roads and electrification of the railways



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