Glenrothes has been rocked by the news of further job losses, following the announcement today (October 16) that HM Revenue and Customs is to close the town’s tax office.
The closure of the Saltire House tax office in Pentland Court will result in 54 job loses and represents a second blow to the town coming just a week after 180 job loses at Glenrothes-based specialist window manufacturer Velux.
The Glenrothes tax office is one of 14 from across the UK that will close with the total loss of 453 jobs.
The news was announced to staff at a meeting earlier today with the Glenrothes office expected to close by December 2015.
Glenrothes and Central Fife MP Lindsay Roy has campaigned for a rethink over the closure ever since the cuts were first mooted back in June.
“The closure plans just don’t make sense and this is centralisation gone made,” said Mr Roy.
“The tax office workers in Glenrothes have built up a high degree of expertise over many years – indeed, they have won the prestigious Charter Mark award for the quality of its service.
“It’s a tragedy.”
Public and Commercial Services Union general secretary Mark Serwotka said: “It makes absolutely no economic sense to continue cutting in the department that collects the taxes that fund the public services we all rely on.
“This political and economic vandalism is even more stark and outrageous when, even by the department’s own modest estimate, tens of billions of pounds is lost to our public finances largely through tax evasion and avoidance.”
But an HMRC spokesman insisted they have no choice but to close the office as part of the department’s UK-wide restructuring plans.
She said: “In line with our Spending Review settlements, HMRC is continuing to reduce in size, to become more highly-skilled and to operate from fewer locations.
“We are also changing the way we work to better meet the rising expectations of our customers and help them ensure they get things right.
“The announcements are absolutely no reflection on the contribution and commitment of the people who are affected, but are a result of our need to become more efficient and to live within our financial constraints.”