Mark Whitehead 12 December 2016

Scottish councils warn of threat to jobs and services

Further cuts in government funding on the same scale as last year would have a 'disastrous' effect on services, Scottish council leaders have warned.

The Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) says council budgets fell by 3.6% last year and any more cuts would hit those who are in most need the hardest.

It says the Scottish Government must treat local government fairly in this week’s settlement announcement and has run a media campaign highlighting the services councils provide.

COSLA president David O’Neill said: 'All too often when we talk of cuts to local government these are seen in the abstract.

'The reality is that we are talking about real cuts to services and jobs.

'The simple truth is that a cut to local government means a cut in teaching assistants, a cut in levels of care for all our elderly relatives, cuts for the homeless as a freezing winter starts to bite, and cuts to gritting of the roads at a time of freezing temperatures when trains and the wider transport network is struggling to cope.

'The government cannot simply bat this away by claiming that they are treating local government "fairly" and "providing enough cash".'

A report published today also warns local authorities north of the border face £700m in further cuts.

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