Councillor James Dornan has called on Glasgow’s Labour leader to stop his political posturing and start defending Glasgow’s teachers, police officers and council tax payers.
The Leader of the SNP Opposition was responding to comments over Glasgow’s budget settlement made in today’s media by Labour group leader Gordon Matheson who replaced disgraced former high flyer Stephen Purcell.
Councillor Dornan said: “The budget settlement offered to Local Government has been made during the worst period of financial difficulty seen for generations. Councillor Matheson’s Labour colleagues at Westminster ushered this economic crisis in and have left us all to deal with problems of their making.
“Despite Councillor Matheson’s false claims of Glasgow being unfairly treated he knows full well that Glasgow’s allocation is based on a nationally agreed formula, using indicators such as population and that Glasgow’s population has fallen.
“The only people with a political agenda here are Councillor Matheson and his cronies who appear to be much more concerned with picking a fight with the Scottish Government rather than working with them to ensure that Glasgow’s council tax is frozen, new teachers are guaranteed a place and police numbers are kept at their record high.”
Councillor Dornan accused the Labour Council leader of failing to act with maturity in difficult times and added:
“Glasgow would be much better off with a Council Leader who acted with maturity when faced with difficult times, particularly as they are of his own party’s making, instead of one who is continually looking for someone else to blame.
“It’s time for the Labour administration in Glasgow to step up to the plate, stop their political posturing and provide the people of Glasgow with a properly costed and realistic set of budget proposals to get us through the worst of Labour’s financial crisis instead of this constant electioneering.”
Glasgow’s revenue budget for the year 2011-12 is expected to be £1,391,857,000 whilst the capital budget is projected to be £147,912,000.
Glasgow’s per capita allocation is the highest in mainland Scotland – only the island authorities of Eilean Siar, Orkney and Shetland receive greater per capita shares, the city receives more than 23% per head above the Scottish average.
The methodology employed to determine funding to local authorities is agreed between COSLA and local authorities. A consultation on the funding formula was held this year.
Glasgow City Council, in line with all local authorities in Scotland, faces a cut to the revenue and capital budgets as a result of the cuts the Scottish block grant imposed by the Tory Lib Dem coalition.
The Councils facing the smallest budget cuts, based on the agreed formula, are:
1. – West Lothian (SNP/Ind)
2. – Falkirk (Lab/Con/Ind)
3. – Dundee City (SNP minority)
4. – East Dunbartonshire (Lab/Con)
5. – East Lothian (SNP/LD) and Inverclyde (Labour/Ind/Con)