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Budget secures Scotland's social contract

Published: 23 Feb 2017 17:09
Part of:
Economy

Budget Bill 2017-18 passes final Parliamentary vote.

The Scottish Government’s 2017-18 Budget has been passed by the Scottish Parliament.

The budget invests in opportunities for young people, reform of the NHS and growth in the economy. The budget passed today secures an additional  £900 million of expenditure, including:

  • record revenue spending of £12.7 billion on the NHS, an increase of £120 million above inflation
  • an initial £60 million to start the process of expanding early learning and childcare to 1,140 hours by the end of this Parliament
  • £120 million directly to schools to help close the attainment gap
  • £1.6 billion investment in higher and further education, ensuring access for eligible students remains free and maintaining at least 116,000 college places.
  • real-terms funding protection for Police Scotland's resource budget and an extra £25 million to support further reform activity
  • over 100,000 business properties paying no business rates and £4 billion of infrastructure investment
  • a strong settlement for local government, including an additional £160 million investment – agreed at Stage 2 of the Budget Bill – to support local services.

Finance Secretary Derek Mackay said:

“This budget secures Scotland’s social contract with  investment in public services on a massive scale, support for our economy and help for those on low incomes.

“With £900 million of additional investment we are putting in place the foundations to transform and reform our public services and to deliver on our commitments over the next five years.

“We are providing the funding for education to close the attainment gap, double childcare and protect higher and further education.

“We are investing record amounts in our frontline NHS, in social care and protecting free prescriptions and free personal care for the elderly.

“Business has the full backing of the Scottish Government with a £500 million Scottish Growth Scheme, £4 billion of infrastructure investment and over 100,000 properties paying no business rates at all.

“And we are helping those on low incomes by freezing the basic rate of income tax, backing first time buyers and mitigating the impact of UK welfare reform.

“This is a budget that delivers for every part of Scotland and it is one that ensures taxpayers all across the country get more for their money, than anywhere else in the UK.”