Dumfriesshire MSP Elaine Murray has called for a united stand from local people, trade unions and elected representatives in order to fight the severe cuts being imposed on Dumfries & Galloway Council by the Scottish Government.
Most recent figures reveal that the Local Authority faces cuts of over £22million next year, far greater than the £12million savings originally planned for and far higher than the national average.
Cosla, the organisation that represents local councils in Scotland, estimated that the Scottish Government's budget cuts would cost 15,000 jobs across Scotland.
While the budget allocation from the UK Government to the Scottish Government fell in real terms, there was a cash increase of several hundred million pounds. In contrast, the Scottish Government’s budget allocation to Local Authorities fell in both real terms and in cash terms.
Dumfriesshire MSP Elaine Murray said:
“Local people were rightfully angry in the aftermath of the Scottish Government’s budget. It seems like our region has been hit with a double whammy of cuts; austerity measures imposed by the UK Government, and austerity max imposed by the Scottish Government in the form of these £22million cuts.
“Our local Council is responsible for the delivery of education for our children, for the care of our elderly, and for the maintenance of much of our local infrastructure. We should make no mistake – these cuts will have devastating impacts on all services, and could lead to hundreds of local job losses.
“However, it isn’t too late for the Scottish Government to reverse these unnecessary cuts. Local people, trade unions and elected representatives of all parties must unite to fight these cuts to local services in our region.”