Potholes and road budget cuts: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

Information requested

Under the terms of FOI and the subsequent Act that relates to such, I would like to request the following information.

Last year I submitted a petition in relation to the networks. I think we would all agree that the Scottish Assembly have failed us dreadful in relation to road surfaces and overall upkeep. The entire situation regarding potholes is ridiculous and every road that you drive on has at least a couple of potholes. This is costing the motorist copious amount of money.

Due to the petition and the outcome of the petition, I noted that £75 million was removed from the road budget. I would like to know:

1.    Given the state of the roads who made such a decision?
2.    Were other political parties aware of the budget being cut?
3.    Where was the £75 million spent if not on the roads?


Each year, the Scottish Government sets a budget which outlines spending plans for funding received from the UK Government and from taxes raised in Scotland. It introduces a Budget Bill which is reviewed by MSPs and requires approval from the Scottish Parliament.

Once the Budget Bill is introduced, there is a debate in the Chamber on the general principles of the Bill where changes can be suggested by Scottish Ministers. MSPs consider the changes proposed by Ministers and vote on whether to pass the Budget Bill. Once passed, and received Royal Assent, it becomes an Act. All political parties are aware of the content of the Budget Bill as it passes through Parliament and have the opportunity to scrutinise and challenge.

The Budget (Scotland) Act 2023 was passed by the Scottish Parliament on 21 February 2023 and received Royal Assent on 27 March 2023.

There is a significant pressure on the Scottish Government’s budget, including the capital programme. This is due to a range of factors, including the impact of high inflation combined with the effects of COVID-19, EU exit and the war in Ukraine and has meant that there has been a steep decline in its buying power. Capital expenditure and investment has been prioritised in order to maximise impact and delivery against strategic priorities.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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