In response to the various letters, comments and views made on austerity and cuts, I thought your readers might find the following figures interesting.
According to the Scottish Government’s own draft budget document, the total Scottish Government budget last year was £37.03 billion. This year, it will be £37.95 billion.
In comparison, according to the Scottish Government’s own local government figures, the Scottish Government gave Shetland £82.69 million last year. This year, they gave Shetland £80.33 million.
The Scottish Government’s own figures reveal the SNP have cut Shetland’s budget by over £2 million this year, despite seeing their own budget increase by over £900 million. And, predictably, the SNP have blamed these local cuts on the UK Government.
But these aren’t Westminster cuts. These are SNP cuts. Made and delivered here in Scotland by the SNP Scottish Government. The SNP are trying to hide this from you but their own figures betray them.
So will the SNP’s local candidate stand up for Shetland against her own party and hold them to account for their cuts to Shetland Islands Council and the local services they provide? Unlikely. The SNP don’t like their politicians questioning the decisions made by Nicola Sturgeon and their High Command. Discipline is everything for the SNP, particularly when supporting the grievance agenda they’ve made the heart of their case for independence.
So the SNP will keep cutting. And they’ll keep blaming someone else, hoping you won’t realise as you cast your votes on Thursday.
Jamie Halcro Johnston
Scottish Conservative and Unionist candidate for Orkney and Shetland