‘The Parliament has been curiously conservative with little appetite across the political parties for bold reform, especially in addressing many of the wicked problems that continue to scar Scotland.’
‘Westminster is also extending its reach to some detailed local policies that are clearly devolved and local. It is not clear, for example, why UK ministers should have a say in the decision about a new concert hall in Edinburgh…’
‘We cannot go on like this. Every year since 2014, steep annual increases in drug-related deaths have been met with promises to look into causes and propose solutions. Meanwhile, people continue to die, as evidence-based and life-saving solutions are left on the shelf.’
‘Today, amid the new neatness required by capital as it turns dirty old cities into presentable products and symbols, Dundee may find it lonely, and eerily quiet, at the top’.
In the latest of our series on local government and devolution, the head of the Cosla office in Brussels analyses whether a European model makes sense.
‘There is no halfway house when it comes to a child’s best interests. However, until automatic funding becomes a Scotland-wide reality, at least Falkirk … is lighting the way.’
‘The Labour councillor’s passion resonates all the more because it is non party political. Voting for cuts to vital services, which will hurt those who most need them, ‘should give none of us any joy or pleasure…from any side of the chamber’.
‘If national and local government and umbrella bodies do not feel that is their role, then they should not be recommending or providing support for particular practical advice to those on the front line, and even less requiring compliance with it.’
‘Fiscal responsibility is the flip side of fiscal autonomy. Those who argue for more money from the Scottish Government without proposing new powers for local government to raise own revenue are also playing a blame game.’ First in a series on centralisation/local autonomy
Auditors in England are under the cosh while the Scottish public audit model wins plaudits. But no room for complacency argues the Auditor General for Scotland