Council cuts: Wightman says report shows need for autonomy

Andy Wightman MSP, Local Government spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (31 Oct) highlighted a report showing the social impact of the 2016-17 local government budget.

The SPICe/Glasgow University/Heriot Watt University report shows most council expenditure is on services used by less affluent communities – services such as social work, public transport and citizen’s advice – but that most cuts have also landed on these services.

Andy Wightman, Local Government spokesperson for the Scottish Greens and MSP for Lothian, said:

“Local authorities provide a lifeline for many communities struggling to make ends meet. Good quality education, social care, public transport, libraries and citizen’s advice are essential if we want a fair society.

“I welcome this new social impact methodology which, although not ideal, is very useful in understanding the impact of cuts to local government budgets.

“Ultimately this report shows the negative impact on local services from the Scottish Government’s cuts to council funding and underlines the need for a fiscal framework between the Scottish Government and local authorities and the need to scrap the Council tax and provide greater fiscal autonomy to local government.”