Scotland’s three year housing budget is to be increased by almost £200 million over the last year, with additional investment seeing an increase of over 30% on spending plans set out in the 2011 Spending Review.
Decisions on last month’s allocation of an extra £50 million of housing consequentials will be announced shortly.
Speaking on the announcement Cllr Jackson said,
“I am delighted that the SNP Government has made house building a major priority now its time for the Labour / Tory coalition running Falkirk Council to put both their parties traditional antipathy towards council houses aside and match the commitment of the SNP to provide affordable housing.
The Tories tried to sell off the best of the housing and Labour tried to give the rest away to private Housing Associations.”
“The Scottish Government has been absolutely clear that we aim to deliver at least 30,000 affordable homes during the lifetime of this parliament and this funding will help ensure this commitment will be met.
Despite Westminster cuts to Scotland’s capital budgets the Scottish Government is delivering just as much new social housing – and more new affordable housing – as in the period up to 2007 when budgets were rising every year.
The extra £50 million is our fourth tranche of extra housing spending announced over the last year, and is in addition to announcements made in February, June and September. The overall increase totals almost £200 million over the spending review period – demonstrating that where we have an opportunity to invest, this Government does exactly that.
Housing is just one element of the Budget Bill which will be debated in Parliament this week. Parliament will be debating a Budget forScotland’s economy. This Government is doing everything within its limited power to protect households, business and front line services, and this Budget provides further investment in construction, skills and the green economy.
Cllr Jackson went on to say
““The investment made by the SNP Government will create jobs locally only if Labour get the finger out and bring forward a more ambitious programme of local house building than we have seen to date..
The Westminster recession has caused havoc with the Construction Industry. This latest SNP announcement will help create new jobs,. Increased support for affordable homes will provide a much needed boost to the local economy if Labour and the Tories match our ambition.
This has to be seen against a 26 per cent real terms cut by the UK Coalition Government to Scotland’s capital budget in a failed attempt to reduce public sector borrowing.
If this an be achieved now imagine what can be achieved with the full powers of Independence.”