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South Lanarkshire Council Write Off Debt


07/04/15


South Lanarkshire Council have written off more than £1million in debt from the last two decades after it was judged to be “irrecoverable”.

The figure was contained in a report for the Finance and Corporate Resources Committee and the debt dates back to 1993.


In total the council will be missing out on £1,001,837.


A total of £437,497 in non-domestic rates, which includes tax for shops and other businesses, and £333,963 in council tax will no longer be pursued by the council.

Smaller amounts in housing charges, £114,879.44, and £112,407.81 in Sundry debts, which cover invoices to SLC, and have also been removed.


The remaining debt comes from BID Levy in regards to Hamilton Town Centre, with £3091.96 removed. The BID Levy comes from a fund set up by businesses in 2012 to improve the town centre, however, the money has been removed for shops that have ceased trading.

However, the BID Levy is held by the council it does not represent a direct cost, as it is funded by the businesses.


Carluke has also recently started their own BID Levy and has not been included.


In total the council will be missing out on £1,001,837.


Within the report, it is noted that the majority of the money comes from a “statutory obligation to write off accounts where the debtor is deceased, sequestrated, in liquidation or the debt is prescribed.”


Paul Manning, executive director of finance and corporate resources, notes that the figures are not too high for over 20 years.

He said: “The finance and corporate committee are asked to consider the write- off of debts that are irrecoverable.

“The main reasons where debts cannot be recovered is when companies have entered liquidation, or ceased trading or where an individual has passed away or been sequestrated.

“The levels of debt collected this year for the council is close to, or exceeds, expectations and for many areas, including council tax collection, collection rates are higher than last year.

“The amounts detailed in last week’s committee for council tax debt write-off relate to council tax debt covering 20 years. The figures are not abnormally high.