Conservative candidate says he'll fight for a fair funding deal for council
A fair funding deal should be on the table for North Lanarkshire Council from the Scottish Goverment – and I am willing to fight for it.
That is the view of the Scottish Conservative and Unionist candidate for Cumbernauld & Kilsyth Haroun Malik.
The lawyer who has his sights on Holyrood is backing plans by his party to reverse years of cuts by the SNP which have been imposed on local authorities such as North Lanarkshire Council during their 14 years in office.
He has said that that the SNP Government’s Budget has increased by nine per cent since 2011-12, yet they have “hammered” local councils with a 17 per cent real terms cut in their revenue funding.
And he added that North Lanarkshire revenue funding has been cut by 16% over the last decade, a cut of £88.8 million.
The Scottish Conservatives proposals would see a guaranteed proportion of the Scottish budget each year enshrined into law to be handed down to councils.
For North Lanarkshire the Scottish Conservative proposals would see an increase of £146.4 m in general revenue funding.
Mr Malik said: “Our councils have been on the frontline against this pandemic, but the SNP have imposed devastating cuts on our local authorities during their 14 years in office. Despite their own budget increasing from the UK Government, they have slashed vital local services.
“The Scottish Conservatives say enough is enough. We will guarantee a fair funding deal for local authorities like NLC in law every year. Only a vote for us on the regional ballot will stop an SNP majority and their plans for indyref2, and have a Parliament that is fully focused on rebuilding Scotland’s communities.
“In North Lanarkshire our funding plans would see an additional £146.4m revenue funding in order to protect services and jobs as we rebuild our communities from Covid.
“The SNP Government have never been interested in supporting our councils despite having the funds from the UK Government to do so.”
Both the Scottish Government and North Lanarkshire Council were approached for comment but both declined - saying they did not think it would be appropriate in the run-up to an election.