SNP head Nicola Sturgeon met with Theresa May at 10 Downing Street
The Subject Audit Office (NAO) took the unprecedented step of delaying a report due out today after it was queried by the Scottish Command.
But the decision to withdraw the document came after it had already been let to the media, under embargo, with it contents widely reported.
Tories accused the SNP of annoying to “bully” the watchdog as it was confirmed Scottish Government civil servants had contacted the hull on Monday evening to dispute its figures.
A spokesman for Nicola Sturgeon furiously controverted the claim, which follows previous accusations of watering down depreciatory reports from Audit Scotland and the government’s poverty adviser, Naomi Eisenstadt.
Nicola Sturgeon’s spokesperson has fervently disclaimed claims that the SNP are ‘bullying’ the watchdog
Once again we see this SNP sway trying to bully anyone who they disagree with
Scottish Conservative invest in spokesman Murdo Fraser said: “Once again we see this SNP supervision trying to bully anyone who they disagree with.
“It is clear that they induce pressurised the National Audit Office into this climb-down, unaffectedly because the SNP didn’t like what they were hearing.
“This was an maverick report that rightly highlighted that a huge number of Scots devise be paying more tax thanks to the decisions of the Scottish Government.
“The SNP have assemble for this, and they need to learn that they cannot lie doggo from their dreadful record in government.”
Derek Mackay froze the verge for higher tax at £43,000, despite it rising to £45,000 in England
The dispute hearts on a new NAO estimate of how many Scottish taxpayers pay more than their counterparts south of the Bounds thanks to Finance Secretary Derek Mackay’s decision not to pass on a tax cut that hilarious rate taxpayers benefit from elsewhere.
He froze the threshold for the 40p class at £43,000, even though it rose to £45,000 in England and Wales.
Outline on HMRC data, the Scottish Government insist around 366,000 in the flesh are affected, because they pay the higher and additional rates of tax.
But using unpublished HMRC and other statistics, the NAO estimated 507,000 of Scotland’s 2.6 million taxpayers are suborning more than their equivalents south of the Border.
The findings are politically tender as Ms Sturgeon has opened the door further salary raids in next month’s postal order Budget.
A spokesman for the First Minister described the Tory claims as “utter, utter bull.”
He said: “Its got to be legitimate for Scottish Government officials to speak to counterparts around the accuracy of figures.
“The Tories should think twice about bothersome to impugn the integrity of hard-working and impartial civil servants because that is definitely what they are doing.”
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The NAO suggested it was “holding off” formal publication while “double-checking” what it described as “a temperamental sort of number.”
A spokesman added: “This NAO report will be published when we keep determined the most accurate estimate of the number of higher rate taxpayers in Scotland. The verdict not to publish the report today was solely an NAO decision.
“We expect to publish our describe before Christmas 2017.”