Readers' letters: Taxpayers are better off living in Scotland

The revelation that Scots pay less in taxes than elsewhere in the UK should not come as a surprise and is something I have highlighted for some time now.

The latest available figures for income tax, council tax, water bills, medical charges and tuition fees show that in comparison to England, Scots pay an average of £840 a year less. Compared with Wales, people in Scotland pay almost £500 less; and if university tuition fees are included the figure balloons to £10,000.

As an example, in Scotland the average Band D Council Tax is £590 lower than England and £423 lower than Wales, while the average household water bill in Scotland is £33 lower than in England and Wales.

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At a time when Brexit is exacerbating the UK’s cost of living crisis, more impending tax increases by this Tory government on national insurance simply add to this costly burden.

While the Tories portray themselves as the party of low taxation, they are in truth anything but.

Alex Orr, Edinburgh.

Victorian city name an unwanted legacy

Apparently the London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, is offering £25,000 grants to change street names in favour of diversity.

I have always been bemused why Edinburgh has retained the awful name of 'Dumbiedykes' for the area just off Holyrood Park.

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The site housed Edinburgh's Deaf and Dumb School until the mid 19th century. On demolition the enclosing walls (dykes) were left. As the inhabitants of the school were known as the "dumbies", the remnant area became known as Dumbie Dykes or Dumbies Dykes.

Surely the name breaks all the rules of today's inclusive society.

Elaine Pomeransky, Edinburgh.

EV batteries are an ecological hazard

BBC Radio 4 recently aired a programme entitled "Will 2022 be the year of the electric car for you?"

This could have been an opportunity to express a broad range of public opinion. There were complaints regarding the initial cost of EVs as well as re-charging costs, charging point availability and reliability from otherwise enthusiastic owners.

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Little more than a minute was allocated to the long term, negative human and environmental repercussions of sourcing, processing and transportring the raw materals for manufacture.

Perhaps EV owners believe the ludicrous suggestion from Steve Fowler of Auto Express, that once their batteries, weighing some 250kg are spent, they can use them to store electricity from their solar panels!

Neil J Bryce, Kelso.

Let’s all follow the same Covid plan

The First Minister ably demonstrates her Covid policies have been driven by narrow minded nationalism and political dogma.

She has tried at every turn to offer a “different” solution to policies in England but on Wednesday again had to follow England in cutting the 10-day isolation period to seven.

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No matter that she cratered the hospitality industry over the Christmas and New Year Festive period and jumped down the throat of a Daily Mail journalist for having the temerity to ask whether she would consider cutting the isolation period just a short time ago!

One of the major lessons to come out of this dreadful pandemic is that the four nations of the UK must work in concert in future and not in isolation, so removing the opportunity for heads of the devolved administrations to showboat at the expense of business and livelihoods.

Richard Allison, Edinburgh.

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