Magazine article Public Finance

£8.3Bn Council Settlement Is 'Extremely Tight', Says Cosla

Magazine article Public Finance

£8.3Bn Council Settlement Is 'Extremely Tight', Says Cosla

Article excerpt

Funding increases ranging up to 2.9% for individual councils have been announced by Scottish Finance Minister Tom McCabe as part of an £8.3bn settlement for local government.

Giving details of the breakdown of the settlement for 2006/07 in the Scottish Parliament, McCabe said that, by 2006, funding would have risen by around 55% since 1999.

McCabe has insisted that councils should be able to keep tax increases below 2.5%. But leaders of the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities, the umbrella group representing 31 Scottish councils, warned that tax levels could still rise by more than 4% to maintain services.

Costa president Pat Waiters said the settlement attacked councils' ability to protect vital services and keep council tax as low as possible.

'The Executive has not delivered anything new for Scottish local government and therefore councils are left with no other choice than to look at cuts in frontline services,' he said. …

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