2 February 2020

The Improvement Service has released Local Government Benchmarking Framework’s National Benchmarking Overview Report for the period 2018/19.

What the report says:

“Scottish local government is now operating in a more challenging setting with greater demand for services against a tightening budget, with improvements achieved in previous years starting to stall.

“The data does highlight that with the status quo there is a real risk to the future delivery of key services.

"Councils are delving into their reserves raising questions as to how they will cope delivering services and maintain the momentum they have gained without a change in funding.”

The report details a:

23% reduction in culture and leisure spending

21% reduction in planning

28% reduction in economic development revenue spending

24% reduction in roads spending

10% reduction in environmental services spending

Commenting, Scottish Labour's local government spokesperson, Sarah Boyack, said:

“What’s clear is that councils have worked hard to maximise their performance while resources have not been enough to address growing demands.

“We should all be concerned that improvements gained in recent years are now beginning to either slow or decline.

“This has to be a wakeup call for the Scottish Government.

“This week they will announce their budget.

"It must provide fairer funding to enable our councils to deliver the services people rely on.

"As the report warns there is a real risk to the future delivery of key services.”

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