TORIES SHORT-CHANGE SCOTLAND BY £48 MILLION
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon MSP has expressed her concerns that UK Treasury funding to help tackle the pandemic actually delivers less than her government budgeted for.
On Wednesday the UK Government said an “additional” £220 million was being made available for Scotland to help with the vaccine rollout and wider COVID response.
However, the First Minister pointed out that the funding had simply been brought forward and amounted to £48m less than her government had already budgeted for:
“As feared, this is not ‘additional’ money – it’s being brought forward from resources we expected in January and had already budgeted for.
“Even more concerning, the net effect of Wednesday’s Treasury announcement is that Scotland is now £48 million worse off than before. The total expected in January was £268 million. We have now been told the actual amount is £220 million.”
Patricia Gibson MP added:
“Sadly, we have become used to this sleight of hand from the Tories. Taking away resources already committed to Scotland. However, there is a more fundamental point.
“Each nation of the UK is responsible for protecting public health in their own country. Yet only when the UK Tory Government takes decisions on England’s behalf is funding triggered, leaving the other nations trying to protect health without the ability to act fully to address their own priorities, in effect with one tied behind our backs.”