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NEWS: Labour debate will call on Holyrood to unite and reject SNP budget

Scottish Labour will use its parliamentary business slot this week to call on Holyrood to unite and reject the SNP’s budget which cuts £327 million from local councils across Scotland.

SNP Finance Minister Derek Mackay will see his budget go under the microscope on Wednesday.

He has already been accused of showing ‘contempt for parliament’ by the cross party finance committee, a body chaired by senior SNP MSP, and former government minister, Bruce Crawford.

Labour said it could not vote for a budget that cuts £327 million from valued local services and which refuses to use the new powers of the Scottish Parliament to stop the cuts.

With the SNP having lost its majority in last year’s Scottish elections, the government cannot force a budget through parliament and must make concessions.

Labour will seek to amend the Scottish budget to use the new tax powers of the Scottish Parliament to stop the cuts and invest to grow our economy instead.

Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale said:

“Labour will oppose the SNP’s £327 million cut to public services in Scotland. We want to use the new powers of the Scottish Parliament to invest in our public services instead.

“The SNP has lost its majority in parliament; it can’t simply bulldoze its plans through Holyrood anymore. If the government wants to pass a budget, it needs to work with the other parties.

“Labour’s offer is simple – work with us to use the new powers and stop the cuts.

“The SNP cannot continue to cut local education budgets without our long term economy suffering. Nationalists cannot continue to cut the budgets of local authorities who deliver social care without piling pressure on our health service. SNP ministers cannot protect the poorest if they refuse to ask the richest to pay a little more.

“This week parliament can send a loud and clear message to the SNP that its business as usual budget simply is not good enough.”

ENDS

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