The SNP’s flagship property tax is facing a huge shortfall in its first year, official figures have shown.

Evidence presented to the Finance Committee yesterday regarding Revenue Scotland shows that the first devolved tax wholly set by the SNP Government, the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax, faces an 18% shortfall in revenue on residential properties compared to what it was projected to make by Finance Secretary John Swinney.

In cash terms that figure is over £40 million.

Scottish Labour have called on the SNP Government to urgently review their projections, and said that the shortfall strengthens the case for a Scottish Office for Budget Responsibility. Earlier this week the former Head of Policy to Alex Salmond said with major new tax powers heading to Holyrood, the SNP talk down impartial research.

Public Services and Wealth Creation Spokesperson Jackie Baillie said:

“The Scottish public need to have faith that the government will raise as much money from their taxes that they say they will. Public finances must be open and accountable.

This shortfall goes right to the heart of the SNP’s competence in government. If these predictions are correct then funding for our schools and hospitals could be looking at a shortfall of tens of millions of pounds.

At a time of austerity the SNP Government need to get their numbers right. It’s typical of their arrogance in government and around public finances that this has happened.

The past 12 months has seen the SNP’s credibility on the economy take an absolute battering. With new powers coming to Scotland over tax and welfare the Scottish people deserve at the very least a government that will use them correctly, transparently and competently.

After eight years in charge, with a majority in the Parliament and with more power than ever before the SNP have no excuses for not delivering on their promises.”