An independent report produced by the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) shows that between 2013-14 and 2018-19, the Scottish government revenue budget was cut by 2.8% but the SNP has hammered councils with cuts to their budgets of 7.5%.
Scottish Labour MSP, Jackie Baillie, has said that the cuts have put lifeline services in Argyll and Bute and West Dunbartonshire at risk. Most recently, SNP-controlled West Dunbartonshire Council has increased charges for care alarms leaving hundreds of vulnerable people struggling to cope with the increased costs. In Argyll and Bute, there was a reduction in the youth and adult learning services budget to less than half its previous level.
“This SNP government constantly blame their budget cuts on the Tories in Westminster but this report shows that they are turbo charging Tory austerity and passing it on to councils across Scotland.
“Instead of using the powers of the Scottish Parliament to stand up to the Tories, the SNP is using Holyrood as a conveyer belt for cuts.
“The cuts are being felt most by those who can least afford them.
“Instead of sitting on half a billion pounds in unspent cash, it’s time that Derek Mackay properly funded local government.”