SNP Government have short-changed Aberdeen by £122M


North East MSP Mike Rumbles has uncovered figures that show Aberdeen City Council has lost out on over £100million of ‘block grant’ funding since 2011.

The records, produced by the Scottish Parliament Library (SPICe), show that Aberdeen has been the worst funded council in Scotland for at least six years running – closely followed by Aberdeenshire Council. City funding has consistently dropped below the Scottish Government’s own funding ‘floor’ of 85% of the Scottish average for Total Revenue Support (TRS).

 

Calculations also show that Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire together have received £711million less than the Scottish average, over the same period.  

 

Mr Rumbles said: “These figures are frankly disgraceful. The Scottish Government have been using the North East as a cash cow, and that has meant less money for our schools, less for our roads, and less for our local services.

 

“It’s no wonder people feel let-down by this Government, they have had over six years to meet their own funding targets and have resolutely failed every time.

 

“This is a vulnerable time for the North East, but instead of supporting and investing in our area, Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire are now two of the worst funded local authorities areas in Scotland.”

 

Liberal Democrat city council leader Ian Yuill added: “People across Aberdeen know that our city has been short-changed by the SNP for years.

 

“This is nothing less than a SNP raid on the cash that could provide vital services for families in Aberdeen.

 

“If something doesn’t change, Aberdeen faces even more SNP underfunding next year. It’s time the Scottish Government held up their hands and gave Aberdeen a fair deal.”

 

ENDS

 

Notes for editors:

 

  • Find attached full table of national council tax statistics provided by SPICe.
  • See below for adjusters and caveats (such as the transfers of funding for Police and Fire in 2013/14):
    • In comparing these figures year-on year please bear in mind that making comparable, year-on-year calculations of local government’s share of the overall Scottish Government budget, and the change in real terms over time is complicated by the regular changes made to the responsibilities and funding of local government. In recent years, two of the most significant changes have been made:  
      • In 2008-09, a large amount of previously “ring-fenced” grants to local government were “rolled-up” into the core local government settlement, having previously been held in other portfolios; and
      • In 2013-14, responsibility (and the associated funding of more than £1,400 million) for police and fire was transferred from local government to the new centralised police and fire services.
  • The basis on which capital was allocated to local authorities has also changed over the years, and the nature of capital spending - i.e. it can change markedly from year to year as projects are started and completed means that it is not generally used in making these long-term individual local authority budget comparisons.
  • It is also important to note that as you requested data covering Council Tax as well as TRS the figures may differ from other figures in the public domain. This is because % of Scottish average calculations are usually based on TRS alone.
  • Underfunding of Aberdeen City Council by year (based on 85% funding floor):
    • 2011/12 - £11.3M
    • 2012/13 - £10.9M
    • 2013/14 - £26.9M
    • 2014/15 - £26.8M
    • 2015/16 - £23.2M
    • 2016/17 - £22.9M (based on current formula)
    • Formula for calculating shortfall:
      • (Scot. TRS)/(Scot. Pop.) = £s per capita (Scot. avg.)
      • £s per capita (Scot. avg.)/100 x 85 = 85% of Scot. avg.
      • 85% of Scot. avg. x (Pop. of Council area) = £s (What Council area would have received if at 85% of Scot. avg.)
      • (What Council area actually received)/(Pop. of Council area) = £s per capita (Actual for Council area)
      • (What Council area would have received if at 85% of Scot. avg.) - (What Council area actually received) = £s (Shortfall)
      • See table below for relevant statistics for calculating TRS:

 

Local authority

 2011-12

 

2012-13

 

2013-14

 

2014-15

 

2015-16

 

2016-17

 

Total Population

 Total revenue support (TRS), £m

 

Total Population

 Total revenue support (TRS), £m

 

Total Population 

 TRS, £m

 

Total Population 

 TRS, £m

 

Total Population 

 TRS, £m

 

Total Population 

 TRS, £m

 Aberdeen City

222,460

360.9

 

224,970

366.5

 

227,130

320.4

 

228,990

325.0

 

231,495

338.8

 

233,890

327.1

Aberdeenshire

253,650

427.3

 

255,540

430.9

 

257,740

397.9

 

260,500

403.0

 

260,620

414.8

 

262,396

406.9

Scotland

   5,299,900

10,431.8

 

5,313,600

10,486.7

 

5,327,700

9,583.1

 

5,347,600

9,666.1

 

5,365,374

9,871.0

 

5,385,719

734.0

                                   

Sources

                                 

TRS, Council Tax and population figures - Scottish local government finance circulars

National Records of Scotland, Mid-2015 population estimates Scotland and corrected population estimates for mid-2012, mid-2013 and mid-2014

         

 

 


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