CIH Scotland says Scotland needs power in order to ‘wipe out welfare reform'
- 04 Nov
The Chartered Institute of Housing Scotland has said that Scotland should be able to spend its tax revenue on topping-up housing benefit in order to wipe out welfare reforms.
In a submission to Lord Robert Smith's commission on extra devolved powers for Scotland, the CIH have suggested that the country receives baseline social security system from Westminister but also has the power to top-up housing benefit with ‘Scottish-raised revenue', reports Inside Housing.
"All Scotland would need is a power to enhance the Westminster baseline benefit up to the level of the full eligible rent (which would then of course wipe out any ‘bedroom tax' or the impact of other caps on housing benefit or local housing allowance)," the submission said.
In CIH Scotland's submission it said it would be concerned if powers over housing benefit alone - and not other related benefits - were devolved.
"If the devolution of further powers was to be confined solely to the delivery of specified benefits such as those mentioned by some of the main political parties (i.e. housing benefit and attendance allowance), the power of the Scottish Government to alter those benefits would be limited," it says.
CIH Scotland also recommended:
- Devolving more powers on property and land (such as elements of inheritance and capital gains tax) and on income tax (such as the power to set rates, bands, reliefs and personal allowances)
- Giving the Scottish Government the power to vary or reduce VAT on housing repairs and improvements
- Maximising the devolution of powers over energy and climate change legislation, including regulation and energy supplier obligations.
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