Swinney confirms SNP support for Tory cuts

For immediate release 17 November 2010

Today's SNP Budget confirms their priorities, which are out of tune with the needs of the Scottish economy and the political will of the Scottish people, Greens argued. John Swinney has decided simply to hand on cuts, and remains unwilling to use the Parliament's existing powers to raise revenue.

Points from the Budget welcomed by the Green MSPs:
* Living Wage for all Scottish public sector workers, which the SNP voted against in April 2010 during a Green debate
* Investment in renewable energy infrastructure
* Continuation of the Climate Challenge Fund

Points from the Budget opposed by the Green MSPs:
* Failure to use revenue raising powers to limit the scale of the cuts
* Cuts in the housing budget of 35% (figure from Shelter)
* Further decreases in public transport budgets while trunk roads and motorways increase
* Cuts to the voluntary sector and to arts & cultural budgets
* Bullying approach to local councils, who were told to accept the deal or face cuts to their budgets of 6.4% instead of 2.6%

Points requiring further clarity:
* Proposals for an increase in taxes for large retail properties; full details are needed, but this move is likely to fall short of a proper Land Value Tax which could raise up to