The 2018/19 Financial Circular, passed by the Scottish Government last week, revealed a real terms cut to North Ayrshire Council of £2.929 million.
The Financial Circular is the financial settlement that is allocated to local authorities to ensure they receive their funding. However, the document was not released until two days after MSPs had voted it through, raising questions on governmental transparency in the Scottish Government.
After weeks of SNP politicians claiming North Ayrshire Council would receive an increase, it turns out that the sums do not take into account factors such as inflation which was led to nearly £3 million less being available in the coming financial year.
The West Scotland MSP expressed his concern at the lack of transparency shown by the SNP government and said the financial spinning represented a complete lack of honesty with the people of North Ayrshire.
Jamie Greene MSP commented:
“North Ayrshire Council will now see a real terms cut of nearly £3 million as a result of this budget. It is simply not acceptable that the SNP tried to spin this figure as some kind of increase. The people of North Ayrshire deserve more honesty than they are getting from Nicola Sturgeon’s government.
“The fact that MSPs were not allowed to see the final sums before they were voted on is worrying and represents a complete lack of transparency from the SNP. How can an MSP stand up for their constituents when important budget figures are being withheld from them?
“The next year is going to be difficult for North Ayrshire families, who have to endure increases in council and income tax as well as real terms slashes to local authority funding. I urge the SNP to change course and not put the burden of their low growth policy onto the shoulders of North Ayrshire residents.”