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Rating Reform

Volume 124: debated on Friday 18 December 1987

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To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he will list the items of personal data that a community charge officer will need to hold in order to compile the community charges register.

The community charges register in Scotland will contain the names, addresses and dates of birth of people liable to pay the community charges, the dates from which they are liable, the names and addresses of responsible persons in terms of section 17(6) of the Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc. (Scotland) Act 1987, and certain further details relating to students. In addition, the community charges registration officer will need to make inquiries about residents who will shortly attain the age of 18, and about people who may be exempt from personal community charge liability, though these details will not appear on the register.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how he will decide on eligibility for home improvement grants when, with the abolition of domestic rates, there will he no rateable valuations of domestic properties.

The Abolition of Domestic Rates Etc. (Scotland) Act 1987 provides for the construction, from 1 April 1989, of references in enactments to the rateable value of domestic subjects. For the longer term, the improvement and repairs grant system in Scotland will be reformed as outlined in the White Paper "Housing: The Government's Proposals for Scotland" (Cm. 242), published on 11 November 1987. Under that reform, the present eligibility test based on rateable value will be replaced by a straightforward test of household resources.