Magazine article Public Finance

Scottish Councils' Housing Debt Rises above £2.2Bn

Magazine article Public Finance

Scottish Councils' Housing Debt Rises above £2.2Bn

Article excerpt

The housing debt of Scotland's local authorities has risen to more than E2.2bn, official statistics have disclosed.

The increasing debt, disclosed this week in Local authority housing income and expenditure 2005/06 to 2007/08, published by the Scottish Executive, is despite efforts to encourage councils to transfer their houses to housing associations. If tenants vote in favour of transfer, debt is written off by the Treasury.

The statistics show that the total outstanding debt of Scottish councils at April 2006 was £2,008.3m. The estimated debt figure at April 2007 was £2,212.4m, an increase of £204.1m.

The figures indicated that debt levels vary widely. Orkney remains debt-free, whereas Shetland (£28,121 per unit) and the City of Edinburgh (£12,475 per unit) have the highest outstanding housing debt. …

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