Hiba Mahamadi 30 October 2017

Participatory budgeting given go ahead in Scotland

Residents in Scotland will be given a say in how £100m of council funds are to be used after a ‘landmark’ agreement was reached between the Scottish government and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COLSA).

By the end of 2021, at least 1% of local government budgets in Scotland will be subject to participatory budgeting, which means that residents will decide how to allocate the budget.

Scotland's local government minister, Kevin Stewart, said: ‘This is a clear way of bringing democracy to local communities by giving people a direct voice in spending decisions.

‘Through the community choices fund, the Scottish Government has already invested £4.7 million in participatory budgeting activity by supporting public authorities and communities across Scotland. 

‘Last year, the fund helped over 39,000 people to have a say on spending in their local area.’

COSLA’s spokesperson for community wellbeing, Kelly Parry, said that this step was crucial to building trust between residents and government. 

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