Scotland’s Council Leaders have written to the First Minister expressing their collective deep concern about the impacts of the financial settlement that Scottish Government has proposed for Local Government as part of this year’s Scottish Budget.
At a special meeting of Leaders on Monday 16th December, it was unanimously agreed that the budget settlement as it stands means another real terms cut to Councils’ core funding, at a time when many in our communities are struggling with the impact of rocketing prices across fuel, food and other bills, and facing unprecedented levels of poverty in a modern era, in an era where Local Government continues to provide the targeted and ongoing support deemed so vital to those most in need.
Council Leaders feel that this budget settlement will have a detrimental impact on vital local services, on our ability to focus the necessary resources and supports to our communities and on those who are already impacted by this cost-of-living crisis.
Leaders added that significantly, it will lead to the loss of jobs, both within Local Authorities and within the local companies who supply goods and services to councils and are reliant on their contracts to employ local people.
In the letter Leaders did acknowledge the impact of inflation, the UK Government’s mini-budget and global economic factors that are continuing to weigh heavily on the Scottish Government’s budgets and spending plans.
Given the pressures facing Councils, Leaders are keen this year to meet with Ministers so they can hear concerns first-hand, look at possible solutions and to work collaboratively with Government to enable Local Government to continue to deliver vital services to our communities.