Thu 14 Dec, 2017

The Scottish Government still has work to do to present a budget that we can support when it reaches the Stage One vote at the end of January Patrick Harvie MSP

Patrick Harvie MSP, Co-Convenor of the Scottish Greens, today (14 Dec) welcomed Scottish Government plans to create new rates and bands of Income Tax, saying it shows Green pressure is helping deliver a fairer Scotland.

The Greens also say their pressure on public sector pay has led to the proposed rise of 3 per cent for workers earning up to £30,000.

But Mr Harvie warned that the draft budget fails the Greens' test on protecting council services, as ministers are proposing a real-terms cut in the local government resource budget.

Patrick Harvie, Finance spokesperson for the Scottish Greens and MSP for Glasgow, said:

“The creation of new bands of Income Tax, cutting tax for low earners and raising it for higher earners, is a landmark moment for Scottish politics, and shows Greens are playing a key part in delivering a fairer Scotland. Our proposals for a fairer system that raises more revenue have shaped the debate, and those still talking about tweaks to the basic rate or freezing it, are being left behind.

"Labour's last leader in Scotland said any progress on public sector pay will be down to the Greens' hard work but the welcome announcement of a three per cent rise for those earning up to £30,000 is due to solid campaigning by unions too and we look forward to workers getting the pay rise they have long deserved.

"Sadly it seems the Finance Secretary has not been listening on the need to start to repair the damage done by years of cuts to local council services. Last year Green MSPs cancelled the SNP's proposed £160m of cuts but we warned that we expected them to go further in future. A real-terms cut is unacceptable and the Scottish Government still has work to do to present a budget that we can support when it reaches the Stage One vote at the end of January."

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SNP Climbdown On Draft Budget Shows Greens Leading The Change

Wed 17 Jan, 2018

Following tonight’s vote at Holyrood, in which SNP MSPs voted to accept Green changes to the Scottish Budget on public services, workers’ pay and low-carbon infrastructure, Green MSP Patrick Harvie said:

"Tonight’s climbdown by the SNP shows they accept that their draft budget cannot command support in Parliament, and they have accepted our view that changes are needed to protect public services, improve frontline workers’ pay and invest in low-carbon capital projects.

Harvie says analysis shows ministers have work to do on council funding and pay

Mon 18 Dec, 2017

Patrick Harvie MSP, Finance spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, said today's (18 Dec) draft budget analysis by the impartial Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) shows ministers have serious work to do on council funding and pay if they want support from the Green MSPs.

The SPICe analysis shows:

*The Local Government Finance Circular shows Total Revenue falling by 1.6% in real terms, or £157.3m.

*Councils could potentially raise an additional £77m, if all 32 raised Council Tax by the maximum 3%.

Our councils deliver critically important services and the decision not to provide a real terms increase to their funding must be challenged

Patrick Harvie MSP Fri 15 Dec, 2017

Derek Mackay has one of the most challenging jobs in politics. He has to construct a budget which not only balances the books, but defends against Tory austerity and meets rising demand for public services. He has to respond to the competing demands for investment in the future and also to the different views across a parliament of minorities.