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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-20243: Colin Smyth (South Scotland)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 28 November 2018

To ask the Scottish Government whether any additional funding will be made available to local authorities to assist in managing the impact of extreme weather this winter.

Answered by: Kate Forbes 11 December 2018

Despite continued UK Government real terms cuts to Scotland resource budget we have continued to treat local government very fairly. In 2019-20, councils will receive a real terms increase in funding for public services.

As the vast majority of revenue funding, including for winter maintenance, is provided to local authorities by means of a block grant, it is then the responsibility of individual local authorities to manage their own budgets and to allocate the total financial resources available to them on the basis of local needs and priorities.

Scottish Ministers can also activate the Bellwin Scheme which can provide additional revenue support to local authorities to assist with the immediate and unforeseen costs in dealing with the aftermath of emergency incidents. It is a discretionary scheme which exists to give special financial assistance to local authorities who would otherwise be faced with an undue financial burden as a result of providing relief and carrying out immediate work due to large-scale emergencies such as extreme winter weather.