Pete Wishart MP, John Swinney MSP and Jim Fairlie MSP have welcomed the passing of the SNP’s Perth and Kinross Council budget. Their comments come after councillors met today (01 March) to set the 2023/24 budget, which has been widely regarded as the tightest ever. The budget passed 24-14. All SNP councillors supported the budget, which was backed by both the Liberal Democrats and Independent group. It was opposed by the Conservatives, while Labour councillors abstained.
Commenting, Mr Wishart said:
“Today has been an extraordinary success for the SNP Group at Perth and Kinross Council. In the most challenging of circumstances, they have successfully delivered a budget that protects vital public services without burdening households with a huge council tax rise. This has truly set the standard for how local government should be done.
“In fact, Perth and Kinross Council is on track to deliver the lowest council tax rise in all of Scotland. To deliver this in spite of the cocktail of financial pressures that have arisen over the past few years – namely, Brexit, the pandemic ,the war in Ukraine and the spectacular fiscal mismanagement of the UK Government – is a testament to the proficiency of our SNP group.
“I want to particularly welcome the additional £2m for improvements to local roads. This funding was secured whilst rejecting numerous proposed cuts, including to the winter maintenance budget, greenspaces, street cleaning and public transport.”
Also commenting, Mr Swinney said:
“This is a budget that has put the needs of the people of Perth and Kinross first.
“I am particularly pleased that over £280k will be invested in education support for our young people, including those who have been most acutely affected by school strikes. I wrote to Perth and Kinross Council to request support of this nature, and I am sure that the SNP administration’s decision to bring this forward will be welcomed by pupils and parents alike.
“I also note the considerable investment of over £800k to tackle poverty within the region. The cost-of-living crisis continues to have a significant impact on the finances of many households across Perth and Kinross and there are many families – particularly those with children – who are struggling to make ends meet. To that end, the creation of a Child Poverty Fund, a Small Grants Fund and further funding for warm spaces will play a significant role in alleviating the pressure that many households are feeling.”
Also commenting, Mr Fairlie said:
“ I welcome the passing of the SNP group budget at Perth and Kinross Council and the significant investment that it represents in our area at a time of significant pressures on public spending.
“I particularly welcome the investment in rural bus services, such as the 55 and 202 in Glenfarg and West Kinross in my constituency. I also welcome the decision to invest in EV charging points in rural areas, as these can often be much needed and less attractive to commercial operators.”
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