Show where all government spending goes, as Scottish Labor demands
A full review of Scottish government spending should be carried out to identify unspent money, wasted spending and to increase transparency around the budget, the Scottish Labor said.
Party finance spokesman Daniel Johnson called for a full spending review as part of the budget process, with “line-by-line” evidence of where public money is being spent.
Scottish Finance Secretary Kate Forbes is due to announce the proposed budget on Thursday and Mr Johnson said knowing where all the money is going would help “make sure every penny is spent wisely”.
The Scottish Government has never undertaken a full expenditure review although it is carried out by the Treasury on British Government expenditure approximately every three years.
Mr Johnson argued that a spending review would allow the government to understand where the money has been successfully spent and where the spending has fallen short.
The government should also be able to provide estimates of what it expects to spend over the next two years, which it believes would bring clarity and stability to public budgets such as those for councils and the police. .
Mr Johnson said: ‘After 14 years, the gap between the SNP’s rhetoric and the reality of investing in Scotland’s future is mind-boggling. To initiate a meaningful recovery from the pandemic and invest in an ambitious future, we must ensure that every penny is spent wisely.
“The SNP’s broken financial pledges have stifled Scotland’s potential for too long. We need an ambitious budget with clear priorities for Scotland’s recovery. We need a clear picture of what we’re trying to accomplish – and if it’s working.
“Transparency and efficiency must be at the heart of our economic recovery. The days of short-term thinking must end.
“That is why, as this budget approaches, Labor will focus on programs that can unlock Scotland’s potential and put us back on the road to recovery.”
Mr Johnson also said the Scottish government will have a ‘pretty substantial envelope’ of additional funding, with at least an additional £ 3.9bn expected to be available thanks to Barnett’s consequences following spending decisions from the British government.
Suggesting that some of the extra money should be allocated to councils to tackle the problems of litter on the streets and potholes on the roads, Mr Johnson added: ‘I think the way ( Scottish Government) has dealt with local government since the SNP took office left local government in a heinous position.
“Frankly, they left our roads in terrible shape and uncleaned garbage, and I think there must be some pretty urgent action to fix these things.”
He added: “I think Kate Forbes has two options. She can go through her budget lines from last year and increase them a bit, ceding to her Cabinet colleagues. Or she can look at the budget and the £ 3.9bn envelope from the Comprehensive Spending Review (UK) and say, ‘What can we do, what interventions can we do to put the money back. get back on track and build the resilience we need? ‘.
For more stories about where you live, visit InYourZone.