§ Mr. Home Robertson
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what proportion of those who were eligible to vote at the regional and islands council elections in 1986 were (a) domestic ratepayers, (b) spouses of domestic ratepayers and (c) people who receive any statutory relief from domestic rates.
§ Mr. Ancram
It is estimated that, of the 4 million people eligible to vote in the 1986 regional and islands council elections, 49 per cent. were domestic ratepayers and 30 per cent. were spouses of domestic ratepayers. All domestic ratepayers qualify under statute for domestic rate relief. It is estimated that some 42 per cent. of them (20 per cent. of electors) currently also qualify on income grounds for full or partial rate rebates under social security arid housing benefit legislation. A relatively small number of domestic ratepayers also enjoy reduced rates under arrangements outside the housing benefit scheme, probably several thousand under the Rating (Disabled Persons) Act 1978 and 130,000 under the Rating (Revaluation Rebates) (Scotland) Act 1985, but information is not available about the numbers of those entitled to more than one kind of relief or rebate.