SNP must pass on extra £67 million for spending to local councils

5 October 2011

Councillor Kevin Keenan , Labour group leader on Dundee City Council , has called on the SNP Government to pass on to local councils such as Dundee the additional £67 million increase in its budget that it will receive from the UK Government as a result of the council tax freeze in England.

This would mean an extra spending of around £1.7 million for Dundee.

Kevin Keenan said,

"There was little or no good news from Mr Swinney when he delivered his Budget Statement on behalf of his SNP domineering majority Scottish Government.

" He is expecting a Council Tax freeze, without delivering the funds and at the same time expecting an interest-free loan from Dundee and every other Local Authority by taking away capital allocation for the next two years.

"My only hope is that the Scottish Government will pass the full amount received from Chancellor Osborne directly to Local Government - anything less would be unacceptable.

"If we were to receive anything less, I hope that this City's SNP Administration would send a very strong message to Mr Swinney.

"I think Mr Obsborne's announcement has out-manoeuvred Mr Swinney as this time cuts in services cannot be attributed entirely to Westminster, and the SNP will now have to stand fully accountable for the decisions and the choices they have made.

"I did welcome Mr Swinney's announcement that he would deliver £15m for the V & A.

"However it is quite regrettable that he did not fully fund this project given the amount of public funds being tipped in to a poorly-managed Edinburgh Trams project."

Councillor Keenan also disclosed that he had written to Ken Guild, the Leader of the SNP Administration on Dundee City Council over a week ago and still await his response to these questions.

These were :

Can you confirm the amount of savings that Dundee City Council will have to make over the Spending Review period if it is your intention to deliver a Council Tax freeze?

Can you also advise how the impact of the re-shuffle in capital will affect the City?   

How much will we lose in the first two years and what impact this will have on current projects and what level of borrowing will we need to do to meet our costs?

Can you confirm that you will honour your Government's commitment to individuals who earn less that £21,000 as this would bring some considerable comfort to many, many employees?



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