UK Government Must Honour Smith Pledges
The SNP today said the UK government still has a long way to meet the principles of the Smith Agreement and seem determined to pursue a solution which would potentially cost the Scotland billions of pounds.
SNP MPs argued during today’s Scottish Affairs Select Committee that the UK government appeared determined to reject the per capita index reduction mechanism of adjusting Scotland’s block grant favoured by the SNP Government, and still seem determined to pursue an alternative block grant adjustment method which would cut billions of pounds from Scotland’s budget in the coming years. Commenting, Patricia said: “All the evidence we have heard suggests that the principles of the Smith Agreement would be met by the SNP Government’s favoured per-capita indexed deduction in the block grant adjustment that meets the principle of no detriment to either Scotland or the rest of the UK. “The SNP Government is absolutely correct therefore to say they will only sign up to a deal which does not threaten Scotland’s budget.
“The Chief Secretary to the Treasury assured us he would go to Edinburgh to seek a resolution. I hope that he has looked at the evidence and agrees with the emerging consensus and ensure the Scottish budget is not subject to unfair cuts which would run totally contrary to the letter and spirit of the Smith Commission.”