The SNP has described he Labour / Tory Administration’s decision to spend £100,000 o the additional £160,000 provided by the SNP’s amendments to the budget figure for parks on minor maintenance issues such as replacing waste bins as “lacking both vision and ambition”.At the final meeting of Falkirk Council before the elections a report on the additional money won by the SNP was debated. This includes £160,000 for parks and £150,000 for sports initiatives for young people.
During the debate it was discovered that Labour and their Tory allies were planning to use much of the additional investment to carry out basic maintenance such as repairing paths and replacing bins within our parks, something they have been claiming to have been doing for the last five years.
In the area of Sports Initiatives for young people the debate uncovered the fact such programmes were funded from the SNP government’s Fairer Scotland Fund which stands at £2.2m a year. However, Labour leaders have already cut the funding to the Fairer Falkirk programmes that flow from this fund to £1.6m, siphoning off money earmarked for local people.
Falkirk Council’s SNP Group Spokesperson for Leisure, Cllr John McNally said,
“What we have seen during this debate is a chronic lack of both vision and ambition from this Administration that is now well past its sell by date.
People will see no added value for two thirds of the extra parks investment to be directed to minor maintenance.
When the SNP secured the additional funding during the budget debate just last month we outlined the potential for this money to be sued to pump prime projects that would see money being drawn down from a number of external sources thus multiplying the benefits to park users.
However, Labour and their allies could not raise their level of ambition beyond replacing a few rubbish bins.”
Councillor McNally also hit out at the missing £600,000 from the Fairer Falkirk Fund and said,
“The SNP Government are giving Falkirk Council £2.2m from the Fairer Scotland Fun yet only £1.6m is going towards local projects and community groups.
Labour need to be honest with the community and explain to the people of Falkirk why they have cut this resource from the SNP Government that was meant for local initiatives and those local groups whose work in the community add value to the lives of the most vulnerable”