Stirling MSP Bruce Crawford has welcomed the commitment  from Scottish Finance Secretary Kate Forbes in a revision to her draft budget that will see hundreds-of-millions going towards supporting public services during the pandemic.

This includes:

  • £275 million to support local authorities facing pressures (including lost income).
  • £40 million to support safety mitigations in Scottish schools.
  • £60 million for further and higher education.
  • £25 million to tackle poverty and inequality.
  • £5.7 million to support the forestry sector.

Commenting, Bruce Crawford MSP said:

“When the Scottish Budget was set last year, little did we know that there was going to have to be a complete re-calibration about how it is we do things.

“The original draft of the Scottish Budget this year came with it a programme for supporting businesses, many of whom in the Stirling Constituency have been unable to open their doors in almost a year.

“I know from speaking to colleagues on Stirling Council that the pressures put on local services as a result of this pandemic have been immense, and there are serious challenges around funding. I’m glad therefore that an additional £275 million has been identified to help Scottish local authorities with the challenges presented by the pandemic – and that Stirling Council will get a share of this.

“With schools opening this week, it’s important that they are supported properly in taking the necessary measures to keep staff and pupils safe. I know that a lot of work has gone on behind the scenes to make this a reality in Stirling schools, but that this too will come with a financial burden.

“I hope that parties of all colours will engage constructively in this process so that local services can receive the funding they need in order to help get us through the pandemic crisis.”