Statistics for 21 of Scotland's 32 council areas were obtained under freedom of information laws by the Scottish Conservatives.
They reveal "massive differences" across Scotland over how long it takes local authorities to pay their bills, with one council paying just 10% on time, the party said.
Scottish Government targets are in place for invoices to be paid by local authorities within 10 working days of being received, said the Tories, who branded councils' payment rate "disappointingly poor".
The statistics for 2012/13 found that some councils were able to pay almost three-quarters of their invoices within the 10-day period.
Edinburgh City Council paid 70% in time while Renfrewshire, Highland and East Renfrewshire managed on-target response rates of 67%, 66% and 64% respectively.
At the other end of the scale, East Ayrshire responded to one in 10 invoices within the target timeframe. South Ayrshire managed 18% and Aberdeenshire 20%.
The Scotland-wide average for the 21 councils who submitted figures is 39%, but with the figures for 11 councils not available, the overall average could go up or down.
Several councils stated that they did not hold the relevant information, the Conservatives said.
The party has called on local authorities to improve the cashflow of local organisations by paying up for services more quickly.
Conservative MSP Margaret Mitchell said: "This is a disappointingly poor rate of payment by our local authorities, right across Scotland.
"Councils should be leading by example by settling invoices promptly, not hanging on to money for weeks on end.
"Prompt settlement is absolutely crucial for cashflow, especially for the many small businesses who provide services to their local council.
"The Scottish Government has this 10-day target in place for a reason and has stated in the past that it is a vital measure in kickstarting local economies.
"With that in mind it should be doing far more to ensure councils are supported and can pay these bills quicker.
"Otherwise, the knock-on effect will only continue to have a detrimental impact right across businesses in Scotland.
"Quite simply, if one council can manage to settle a significant proportion of its bills within 10 days, it is difficult to understand why the others are failing to do so."
Council umbrella body Cosla has been contacted for a response.