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Scottish Budget 2020-2021

Sets out our proposed spending and tax plans for 2020 to 2021, as presented to the Scottish Parliament.

283 page PDF

5.1 MB

283 page PDF

5.1 MB

Contents
Scottish Budget 2020-2021
Chapter 6: Communities and Local Government

283 page PDF

5.1 MB

Chapter 6: Communities and Local Government

Portfolio Responsibilities

The portfolio's overarching aims are to tackle inequalities and reduce child poverty, to create a fairer Scotland, support regeneration and inclusive growth, ensure provision of accessible, affordable, energy‑efficient housing, and to promote community empowerment and the participation of people in all aspects of Scottish life. Further to our commitments set out in the Programme for Government, we continue to prioritise funding to reduce child poverty; support our major expansion of affordable housing and our ambition to deliver 50,000 affordable homes by 2021; to tackle fuel poverty and support our targets on climate change; to review Scotland's National Planning Framework and deliver a world-class planning system; to regenerate, strengthen and empower our communities; to revitalise our towns; to support the third sector and develop social enterprise; and eradicate homelessness and rough sleeping.

The portfolio also incorporates the Scottish Government's funding for local authorities in Scotland, allowing them to deliver the full range of services, from education and social care to transport and planning.

Portfolio Priorities

The priorities of the Communities and Local Government portfolio contribute to National Outcomes of Children and Young People, Communities, Economy, Environment, Fair Work and Business, Health, Human Rights and Poverty.

We will:

  • focus on reducing child poverty to deliver on the ambitious targets in the Child Poverty (Scotland) Act 2017. A key investment in 2020‑21 is to support the early introduction of the Scottish Child Payment for eligible families with a child under 6, which will start to be paid by Christmas 2020;
  • do more to tackle the food insecurity experienced by families during the school holidays;
  • continue to provide free period products to students in schools, colleges and universities and increase and improve access to products in community settings;
  • continue our investment of over £3 billion to deliver 50,000 affordable homes, including 35,000 for social rent, over the five years of this Parliament - leveraging economic output of around £1.4 billion per year and supporting jobs;
  • continue to invest in regeneration activity to stimulate inclusive growth in our most disadvantaged and fragile communities across Scotland, supporting jobs and other opportunities that respond to local needs and ambitions for particular places, including revitalising our towns, in turn improving the prospects and wellbeing of people who live there;
  • ensure communities are inclusive, resilient and safe; where people feel connected, have a sense of belonging, and feel valued for their contribution to society;
  • reduce fuel poverty by using powers in the new Fuel Poverty (Targets, Definition and Strategy) (Scotland) Act 2019 and complete our investment of over £1 billion between 2009 and 2021 in energy efficiency programmes, such as Warmer Homes Scotland, making homes warmer and cheaper to heat; and
  • aim to end homelessness and eradicate rough sleeping through our £50 million Ending Homelessness Together Fund over 2018‑23 along with our Ending Homelessness Together Action Plan.

Housing priorities

In 2020‑21 we will:

  • increase investment in the Affordable Housing Supply Programme to £843 million (including the Transfer of Management of Development Funding (TMDF) in the Local Government budget) and continue work with partners to increase the delivery of more affordable homes, the majority of which will be for social rent;
  • continue to support home ownership through our Help to Buy and Open Market Shared Equity schemes and our new £150 million pilot First Home Fund;
  • continue funding for the Rural and Islands Housing Funds;
  • make further allocations from the £50 million Ending Homelessness Together Fund to further drive innovations to prevent, tackle and end homelessness in line with the Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Group recommendations and subsequent action plan;
  • help tackle infrastructure blockages through a flexible grant and loan fund, and a new Rental Income Guarantee Scheme to support Build to Rent; and
  • continue to tackle fuel poverty and improve the energy efficiency of all Scotland's homes and buildings through our Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (HEEPS).

Social Justice, Regeneration and Scottish Child Payment priorities

In 2020‑21 we will:

  • introduce the Scottish Child Payment which will pay £10 per week, per child every 4 weeks to eligible families with children under 6 by Christmas 2020. When the programme is fully rolled out in 2022, it is estimated that 30,000 children will be lifted out of poverty;
  • expand help for parents on low incomes to gain employment and progress in their careers with investment in an intensive parental employment support programme;
  • continue investment in the Innovation Fund to support new approaches to preventing and reducing child poverty;
  • expand work with Children's Neighbourhoods Scotland to build more successful neighbourhoods for children to grow up in;
  • continue work with the public, third and private sectors to improve access to free period products across a range of settings and create a culture of openness around the issue of menstruation;
  • use our Fair Food Fund to tackle food insecurity with a focus on children in school holidays, following the successful harmonisation of the Fair Food Transformation Fund into the Investing in Communities Fund;
  • continue capital investment to support the regeneration of our most disadvantaged and fragile communities across Scotland, promoting inclusive growth through support for businesses, jobs and other opportunities for local people;
  • continue to deliver our Empowering Communities Programme to tackle poverty and inequality and promote inclusive growth; and
  • continue to encourage public bodies and agencies to adopt and embed the Place Principle and stimulate activity under the Town Centre Action Plan through Scotland's Towns Partnership and Business Improvement Districts in Scotland to support local economies.

Scottish Housing Regulator priorities

In 2020‑21 the Scottish Housing Regulator will:

  • regulate the housing services that social landlords deliver for tenants, homeless people and other service users; and
  • regulate the standards of financial health and governance of registered social landlords.

Third Sector priorities

In 2020‑21 we will:

  • invest in a range of national intermediaries and third sector organisations to deliver programmes and services that strengthen the voice and impact of the sector;
  • increase local capacity and resilience by supporting a network of Third Sector Interfaces, acting as a single point of development support and partnership through community planning;
  • promote transparency and accountability in the third sector and support delivery of Scotland's national volunteering outcomes framework;
  • invest in Scotland's eco-system of support for social enterprise, as well as test new models of social investment and commissioning; and
  • grow the reach and impact of Scotland's credit union movement through a new credit union strategy and investment fund.

Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator priorities

In 2020‑21, the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator will:

  • ensure public confidence in charities through effective regulation and sharing of information;
  • support charity trustees to understand and comply with their legal duties;
  • facilitate effective management via straightforward and proportionate reporting (increasing online services where appropriate); and
  • investigate apparent misconduct in charities, taking remedial or protective action as appropriate.

Governance and Reform priorities

In 2020‑21 we will:

  • respond to the initial findings of the joint Local Governance Review with COSLA by exploring how we can create a system of inclusive local democracy based on rights which will improve outcomes for people and communities;
  • continue our work to support and promote rights for community groups that are part of the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015;
  • continue our work to promote reform of public services around the needs of people and communities, including support for local reform through community planning and nurturing strong collective leadership;
  • continue to work towards our ambition to be an open and connected government through the design of Scotland's third Open Government Action Plan, working in partnership with third sector organisations and people across Scotland; and
  • make positive contributions to support the progression of the values of openness, transparency and citizen participation as a member of the Open Government Partnership, a collaboration of governments around the world.

Planning and Building Standards priorities

In 2020‑21 we will:

  • implement the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 and transform planning in practice by simplifying the system through focusing on places and people, together with publishing a Digital Strategy for Planning which will future proof planning services and meet the long-term needs of our communities;
  • set out the long-term planning response to the global climate emergency by developing Scotland's fourth National Planning Framework (NPF4) which will be aligned with wider infrastructure investment programmes and informed by new interactive digital mapping tools being developed to help inform investment decisions for long-term sustainable development;
  • increase people's involvement in shaping our buildings and places through support for Architecture and Design Scotland and expanding our programme of placed‑based working, particularly in areas of disadvantage and inequality;
  • deliver a programme that meets Ministers' statutory responsibilities covering planning and other appeals work, alongside examination of local and strategic development plans and compulsory purchase orders, transport, energy and other infrastructure projects;
  • implement the changes needed to reshape and improve our Building Standards system through the Futures Board programme to ensure we learn lessons from the Grenfell tragedy and implement the changes needed and develop a workforce strategy that maintains the required number of skilled construction professionals who can deliver the safe, resilient and sustainable buildings for people to use and live; and
  • introduce the necessary regulations to take forward commitments on automatic fire suppression systems in all new build social housing and introduce new levels of energy standards from 2021 as the next step towards net-zero carbon buildings.

Connected Communities priorities

In 2020‑21 we will:

  • continue implementation of the New Scots strategy with partners which will continue to 2022;
  • develop an anti‑destitution strategy covering people with no recourse to public funds;
  • continue to offer a place of safety to refugees arriving for resettlement;
  • strengthen interfaith relations and dialogue;
  • continue to implement the Tackling Prejudice and Building Connected Communities Action Plan;
  • introduce a Bill on hate crime to consolidate and modernise hate crime legislation in Scotland; and
  • work with partners and stakeholders to deliver a balanced and proportionate approach to safeguarding vulnerable individuals who may be exploited by or drawn towards divisive ideologies.

Local Government funding and priorities

Local government provides high quality front-line services that drive inclusive economic growth and improve outcomes for people and communities across Scotland. The overall funding package for 2020‑21 builds on the 2019 Programme for Government and prioritises our shared objectives of improving wellbeing, supporting inclusive economic growth, responding to the climate change emergency and tackling child poverty that will continue to ensure Scotland is a country where everyone is valued, safe and has the opportunity to the best possible quality of life. Scotland's local authorities continue to be critical partners in the Scottish Government's transformative programme of public service reform.

In 2020‑21 we will make available to local government a total funding package amounting to £10.9 billion. This figure includes both general and specific revenue and capital grants as well as the 2020‑21 distributable amount of non‑domestic rate income. Local authorities collect and retain every penny of the non‑domestic rate income collected within their area. The Scottish Fiscal Commission has responsibility for the independent forecasting of the non‑domestic rate income used in the annual calculation of the distributable amount. Table 6.13 sets the Scottish Fiscal Commission forecasts for 2020‑21 and the details behind the calculation of the 2020‑21 distributable amount.

In addition to the core local government finance settlement, the Scottish Government provides local authorities with other funding streams for individual key government priorities (see the full explanation in the following information box).

2020-21 Local Government funding

The funding available to local government through the settlement consists of the general revenue and capital grants, the distributable amount of non-domestic rates and a number of ring-fenced specific grants, both revenue and capital. The Scottish Government continues to guarantee each local authority's formula share of the combined general revenue grant plus the distributable amount of non-domestic rates. The central government funding is supplemented locally by council tax income set by and collected by councils and the ability for councils to levy fees and charges for local services.

The Scottish Budget sets out a total funding package for local government amounting to £10.9 billion but this does not represent the total funding which will be provided by the Scottish Government to local government during the financial year 2020‑21. Various other funding allocations linked to individual policy initiatives are currently held within the relevant portfolios. The additional sums are summarised in Table 6.10 and the full details are set out in Tables 6.11, 6.14 and 6.15.

Summary of Total 2020-21 Local Government Funding (see Table 6.10)

£m
Budget Core Local Government Allocations (Table 6.11) 10,907.0
Revenue Funding within other Portfolios (Table 6.14) 428.7
Total Local Government Finance Circular 11,335.7
Local Government funding outwith core settlement (Table 6.15) 580.3
Total Scottish Government Funding to Local Government 11,916.0

The additional funding streams set out in Table 6.14 are currently held within other portfolios within this budget document and will be transferred during the course of 2020-21 to the local government finance settlement. These sums have been added to the local government finance settlement and are included in the local government finance circular that will be issued for consultation on 6 February.

Over and above the money which will be included within the Local Government Finance (Scotland) Order 2020 there are a number of funding streams attached to particular policy initiatives and these are set out in Table 6.15.

The Scottish Government believes that improvements in health, both physical and mental are central to our wellbeing and success as a nation. Improving our nation's health and wellbeing will require high quality joined up services, no matter whether those services are provided by NHS, local government or third and independent sectors. Connected to this, and in addition to the £160 million available in 2019‑20, a further £100 million will be transferred from health portfolio to local authorities in 2020‑21 for investment in health and social care and mental health services. The total includes £25 million for continued delivery of the Living Wage in recognition of the important contribution of our hard-working public sector employees, £2.2 million to uprate free personal and nursing care to ensure anyone of any age has access to free personal care when they need it, £11.6 million for continued implementation of the Carers Act to ensure that the rights of Scotland's unpaid carers are secure and a further £4 million of support for school counselling services to support children and young people in their communities.

The Scottish Government has allocated an additional £201 million of revenue and £121 million of capital to local authorities in 2020‑21 to support the expansion in funded Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) entitlement to 1,140 hours from August 2020. The ELC funding will create additional capacity in ELC settings, support the increase to the ELC workforce and provide additional training opportunities for existing staff, ensuring a high quality ELC service that provides every child with the best possible start in life.

We will also continue to take forward our ambitious programme of educational reform to deliver an education system led by communities, schools and teachers. The Scottish Government, in partnership with local authorities, is empowering schools to make key decisions on areas such as the curriculum, budgets and staffing while continuing to deepen collaboration across the education sector.

In recognising that teachers are central to achieving our ambition of delivering excellence and equity in Scottish education we will continue to commit an overall funding package of £88 million in the local government finance settlement to support both maintaining the pupil teacher ratio at a national level and ensuring that places are provided for all probationers who require one under the teacher induction scheme. The settlement also includes £156 million towards the most recent teachers' pay agreement and £97 million in recognition of the increase in employer pension contribution costs to the Teachers Pensions Scheme.

Our relentless focus on closing the poverty‑related attainment gap between those from the most and least disadvantaged communities will ensure that every child has the same opportunity to succeed and contribute to the economy by achieving the highest standards in literacy and numeracy with the right range of skills, qualifications and achievements they need. Each local authority area will therefore continue to benefit from Pupil Equity Funding (PEF) which forms part of the overall commitment from the Scottish Government to allocate £750 million through the Attainment Scotland Fund, over the term of the Parliament to tackle the attainment gap. £120 million in Pupil Equity Funding is going directly to head teachers to provide additional support to help close the attainment gap and overcome barriers to learning linked to poverty. This is additional to the £62 million Attainment Scotland funding, which is outwith the local government finance settlement. Money from the Attainment Scotland Fund will continue to provide authorities and schools with additional means to provide targeted literacy, numeracy and health and wellbeing support for children and young people in greatest need.

The Scottish Government will also work in partnership with local government on a number of measures to ensure that Scotland ends its contribution to global climate change by 2045 at the latest. Alongside the investment of £500 million to improve bus priority infrastructure and tackle congestion over the next few years, the 2020‑21 Budget provides additional capital funding of £50 million for a Low Carbon Investment Heat Networks Early Adopters Challenge Fund to enable support for local authorities who are ready to bring forward investment‑ready heat networks and over £13 million to public bodies through our successful Switched on Fleets Programme, for investment in zero or ultra‑low emission vehicles.

Scotland's 32 local authorities will be expected to fulfil the joint priorities agreed between the Scottish Government and local government. The total package linked to these joint priorities includes:

  • an additional £201 million revenue and £121 million capital to support the expansion in funded Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) entitlement to 1,140 hours by 2020;
  • a further £100 million to be transferred from the health portfolio to the local authorities in‑year for investment in health and social care and mental health services, including delivery of the Living Wage (£25 million) and uprating of free personal care (£2.2 million), implementation of the Carers Act (£11.6 million) and further support for school counselling services (£4 million);
  • baselining of the £90 million added at Stage 1 of the Budget Bill for 2019‑20;
  • the ongoing £88 million to maintain the pupil teacher ratio nationally and secure places for all probationers who require one under the teacher induction scheme;
  • provision for the Teachers Pay agreement (£156 million) and Pensions (£97 million);
  • an allocation of £5 million for Barclay implementation costs; and
  • a new £50 million capital Low Carbon Investment Heat Networks Early Adopters Challenge Fund to enable support for local authorities who are ready to bring forward investment‑ready heat networks.

Business Rates priorities

The Scottish Government remains committed to a competitive non‑domestic rates regime, underlined by the proposals outlined in this Scottish Budget. The poundage in Scotland has been capped below the Consumer Price Index at 49.8 pence, a 1.6 per cent increase, delivering the lowest poundage rate anywhere in the UK. The higher property rate (formerly described as the large business supplement) for those with a rateable value above £95,000 will remain frozen at 2019‑20 levels and, to help overall progressivity, we will implement a new lower intermediate property rate for properties with a rateable value between £51,000 and £95,000. Taken together these decisions will ensure that over 95 per cent of properties in Scotland pay a lower poundage than they would in other parts of the UK.

The budget maintains a generous package of reliefs benefiting over 150,000 properties and worth an estimated £744 million in 2020‑21.

This includes the Small Business Bonus Scheme to deliver the manifesto commitment that over 100,000 properties are taken out of rates altogether. This scheme is more generous than any equivalent relief in the rest of the United Kingdom.

The Business Growth Accelerator is unique to Scotland and will continue to be available to encourage new business investment by suspending rates liabilities for new builds and property improvements.

The Non‑Domestic Rates (Scotland) Bill was introduced to Parliament in March 2019 to deliver the recommendations of the Barclay Review including measures such as the shift to a 3‑yearly revaluation cycle and policies to address known tax avoidance tactics. The Bill is scheduled for completion during the week beginning 3 February 2020. Due to the lead times for printing the Scottish Budget 2020‑21, the outcome of Stage 3 was unknown prior to the publication of this document.

Business Rates forecasts

The Scottish Fiscal Commission (SFC) forecasts what is known as the 'contributable amount' for NDR, which can be thought of as being the amount collected by local authorities that subsequently flows to the Scottish Government. The contributable amount collected by local authorities is pooled at a national level, before being redistributed by the Scottish Government as part of the Local Government finance settlement. The amount of NDR income redistributed to local authorities as part of this settlement is known as the 'distributable amount'.

In previous SFC reports, it outlined how its forecast is used by the Scottish Government to inform what amount can be distributed to local authorities for the year ahead.[1] Government can distribute more or less than the forecast contributable amount in any given year, as long as the total amount collected is subsequently distributed back to local government. Notwithstanding this flexibility, the calculation of the distributable amount by government also takes account of other factors including:

  • the estimated closing balance on the account from the previous financial year;
  • estimated prior year adjustments to be carried over to the account from the year before; and
  • the amount forecast to be raised in the year ahead.

At the last budget, the Scottish Government chose to set the distributable amount at a level so that the account was projected to be in balance at the end of 2021‑22.[2] This year, the distributable amount set by government leads to a projected negative balance of £100 million on the account at the end of 2020‑21, as shown in Table 6.13. The Scottish Government plans to bring the account back into balance by 2022‑23.

Illustrative Projected Balance of the NonDomestic Rating Account

£ million 2017-18 2018-19 2019-20 2020-21
Provisional contributable amount (A)[3] 2,844 2,883 2,890 2,749
Net effect of prior year adjustments (B)[4] (23) (82) (36) (84)
Distributable amount (C) 2,666 2,636 2,853 2,790
Annual balance (D) (A + B - C) 155 165 1 (125)
Cumulative balance (E) (E from year before + D) (141) 24 25 (100)

Figures may not sum because of rounding. 2017‑18, 2018‑19 and 2019‑20 refer to outturn. The presentation differs slightly to that in the published audit of the NDR rating account, mainly due to the presentation of line B - 'net prior year adjustments'.

As outlined in previous SFC reports, the audited balance of the pool will be determined by several factors in practice. These include not only the accuracy of SFC forecasts, but also the difference between the estimates provided by local authorities to the government after the start of the financial year in April (the provisional contributable amount in the table above) and the final audited NDR income returns for the financial year. The difference is termed the prior year adjustment. Contributions to the pool are determined by individual local authority estimates of collections for the year, submitted to the Scottish Government after the start of the financial year. This means that the actual balance of the pool could be positive despite our projection of a negative balance if local authorities report a high level of collections in their start of year estimates.

Should the projected negative balance in 2020‑21 materialise this will have to be addressed by the Scottish Government at future budgets. This does not necessarily affect the local government settlement directly, but would need to be managed as part of the overall Scottish Government Budget.

The 2019‑20 Scottish budget set out our plans to set the distributable amount at £100 million more than the forecast receipts for the NDR pool in 2019‑20. This decision to bring forward some of the forecast growth in NDR receipts from 2020‑21 and 2021‑22 was intended to support continued investment in local government and stimulate the economy. In the event the latest SFC NDR income estimates confirm that the NDR pool will actually show a surplus of £25 million for 2019‑20. Since we did not utilise this facility in 2019‑20, our budget plans therefore propose to bring forward some of the forecast growth from 2021‑22 and 2022‑23 and allocate £100 million more in 2020‑21 than is forecast to be collected in the pool. Table 6.13 sets our plans to bring the pool back into balance by the end of 2022‑23, the forecast growth in receipts thereby avoiding any adverse impact on the wider budget in future years.

Local Taxation priorities

In the past 3 years, in order to protect household incomes we have been able to secure the agreement of local government for locally determined council tax increases to be capped. For 2019‑20, this agreed cap was 3 per cent in real terms, equivalent to 4.79 per cent in cash terms. Only 12 councils increased tax by the maximum, resulting in the average increase in Scotland for 2019‑20 being 3.6 per cent compared to 4.7 per cent in England and 6.6 per cent in Wales.

We recognise that households value being protected from unexpectedly high increases to the council tax they are required to pay and therefore, we have secured the agreement of local government that council tax increases for 2020‑21 will be capped at 3 per cent in real terms (4.84 per cent), which will increase total council tax revenues to be spent on local services by a further £135 million. The Council Tax Reduction Scheme will continue to ensure that low-income households are not required to meet council tax liabilities they cannot afford.

In Budget 2019‑20, we confirmed our view that the present council tax system must end. We have therefore convened cross party talks to identify an alternative to the present council tax system that could be supported by Parliament. If there is agreement on such an alternative, we will publish legislation by the end of this Parliament, with that legislation taken forward in the following Parliament.

The Scottish Government is committed to making local taxation more progressive, whilst improving the financial accountability of local government. During the course of the Budget 2019‑20 process, we committed to implement a package of local tax reforms which will deliver the most significant empowerment of local authorities since devolution. We are now delivering on these commitments. For example, the Transport (Scotland) 2019 Act, passed by Parliament in October 2019, creates the power for councils to introduce a workplace parking levy, if it is appropriate for their local authority area. We have also completed a public consultation on a local discretionary visitor levy or tourist tax. The results of this consultation will inform the development of legislation to be introduced in 2020 that will permit local authorities to introduce such a levy - if they consider it appropriate for local circumstances.

Individual local authorities will be allocated their fair formula share of the total funding package that will be issued for consultation with local government before being put to the Scottish Parliament for final approval in March.

Spending Plans

Table 6.01: Spending Plans (Level 2)

Level 2 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Planning and Building Standards 7.6 9.5 12.4
Third Sector 24.5 24.9 24.6
Governance and Reform 1.2 5.6 4.5
Connected Communities - - 4.4
Housing 893.6 967.2 1,092.1
Social Justice, Regeneration and Scottish Child Payment 76.1 66.9 97.9
Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator 3.0 3.3 3.3
Scottish Housing Regulator 4.7 4.5 4.3
Local Government 10,519.6 10,872.9 10,910.8
Total Communities and Local Government 11,530.3 11,954.8 12,154.3
of which:
Fiscal Resource 7,158.6 7,102.5 7,552.0
of which Operating Costs* - 35.8 40.2
Non-cash 0.3 0.3 0.3
Capital 1,479.1 1,737.5 1,473.5
Financial Transactions 256.3 261.5 338.5
UK Funded AME 2,636.0 2,853.0 2,790.0

* Scottish Government operating costs have been presented in this way within portfolio budgets since 2019-20.

Presentational Adjustments for Scottish Parliament Approval

Level 2 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator - shown separately (3.0) (3.3) (3.3)
Scottish Housing Regulator - shown separately (4.7) (4.5) (4.3)
Central Government Grants to Local Authorities returned to portfolios (E&S, Justice, TIC) (439.6) (740.7) (880.9)
Total Communities and Local Government 11,083.0 11,206.3 11,265.8
Total Limit on Income (accruing resources) 80.0

What the Housing budget does

The budget supports the delivery of more quality affordable warm homes, and assistance to eligible households through the Warmer Homes Scotland scheme. It funds a range of other housing and regeneration activities, including action to end homelessness, funding for adaptations for older and disabled Registered Social Landlord tenants and creating sustainable communities. It includes the Scottish Household Survey which provides data across a range of National Performance Framework indicators.

Table 6.02: Housing Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
More Homes 722.5 788.7 896.1
Fuel Poverty/Energy Efficiency 116.3 119.6 137.1
Housing Support 51.2 52.7 52.7
Communities Analysis 3.6 6.2 6.2
Total Housing 893.6 967.2 1,092.1
of which:
Fiscal Resource 65.7 77.9 77.1
Non-cash - - -
Capital 576.6 627.8 678.5
Financial Transactions 251.3 261.5 336.5
UK Funded AME - - -

What the Social Justice, Regeneration and Scottish Child Payment budget does

The budget delivers a range of actions to reduce poverty and tackle inequality, including improving access to free period products, reducing food insecurity and resource for the Tackling Child Poverty Fund and funding the Scottish Child Payment.

It enables us to continue to support regeneration initiatives which respond to local circumstances, involve local people in identifying issues and co‑creating solutions, address market failure, and increase opportunities to attract investment and support job creation in disadvantaged areas.

Table 6.03: Social Justice, Regeneration and Scottish Child Payment Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Social Justice 27.8 24.6 29.5
Scottish Child Payment - - 21.0
Regeneration 48.3 42.3 47.4
Total Social Justice, Regeneration and Scottish Child Payment 76.1 66.9 97.9
of which:
Fiscal Resource 46.1 41.9 67.9
Non-cash - - -
Capital 25.0 25.0 30.0
Financial Transactions 5.0 - -
UK Funded AME - - -

What the Scottish Housing Regulator budget does

The Scottish Housing Regulator, the independent regulator of social landlords (i.e. local authority landlords and registered social landlords), has the statutory objective of safeguarding and promoting the interests of:

  • around 600,000 tenants who live in homes provided by social landlords;
  • over 45,000 people and their families who may be homeless and seek help from local authorities;
  • over 123,000 home owners who receive services from social landlords; and
  • around 2,000 Gypsy/Traveller families who can use official sites provided by social landlords.

Table 6.04: Scottish Housing Regulator Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Total Scottish Housing Regulator 4.7 4.5 4.3
of which:
Fiscal Resource 3.9 4.1 4.1
Non-cash 0.2 0.2 0.2
Capital 0.6 0.2 -
Financial Transactions - - -
UK Funded AME - - -

What the Third Sector budget does

This budget supports the third sector in their work with individuals and communities, including the delivery of volunteering, the development of our approach to social enterprise, and support for the national and local third sector infrastructure (including the Third Sector Interfaces). The third sector will also have access to resources through other programmes in the wider budget.

Table 6.05: Third Sector Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Total Third Sector 24.5 24.9 24.6
of which:
Fiscal Resource 24.5 24.9 22.6
Non-cash - - -
Capital - - -
Financial Transactions - - 2.0
UK Funded AME - - -

What the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator budget does

The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) is responsible for the registration and regulation of more than 24,000 charities in Scotland. It has a statutory function to determine the charitable status of bodies, to keep the public register of charities, and to monitor and investigate apparent misconduct.

Table 6.06: Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Total Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator 3.0 3.3 3.3
of which:
Fiscal Resource 2.9 3.2 3.2
Non-cash 0.1 0.1 0.1
Capital - - -
Financial Transactions - - -
UK Funded AME - - -

What the Governance and Reform budget does

This budget supports public service reform including partnership working with local government third sector organisations and communities around the empowerment of people and the importance of place.

This budget also includes provision for activities in relation to local taxation, which includes implementing the Barclay Review recommendations for non‑domestic rates, the Council Tax Reduction scheme and a range of analytical and statistical work.

Table 6.07: Governance and Reform Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Local Governance 0.5 0.5 0.5
Public Service Reform and Community Empowerment 0.7 5.1 4.0
Total Governance and Reform 1.2 5.6 4.5
of which:
Fiscal Resource 1.2 5.6 4.5
Non-cash - - -
Capital - - -
Financial Transactions - - -
UK Funded AME - - -

What the Planning and Building Standards budget does

The budget supports the operation of the planning system and the wider programme of planning reform to support inclusive growth and create great places for people and communities. It also delivers improvements to the quality and safety of the built environment including research on developments in technology, building design and architecture.

Table 6.08: Planning and Building Standards Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Architecture and Place 1.4 1.4 1.4
Building Standards 0.3 0.9 2.0
Planning 5.2 6.5 8.3
Planning and Environmental Appeals 0.7 0.7 0.7
Total Planning and Building Standards 7.6 9.5 12.4
of which:
Fiscal Resource 7.1 9.0 10.4
Non-cash - - -
Capital 0.5 0.5 2.0
Financial Transactions - - -
UK Funded AME - - -

What the Connected Communities budget does

This budget supports work with partners to support asylum seeker and refugee integration, to strengthen interfaith relations and dialogue, and work to tackle prejudice and build connected communities. It also supports the development of a Hate Crime Bill and work with partners and stakeholders to safeguard vulnerable individuals who may be exploited by or drawn towards divisive ideologies.

Table 6.09: Connected Communities Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Total Connected Communities - - 4.4
of which:
Fiscal Resource - - 4.4
Non-cash - - -
Capital - - -
Financial Transactions - - -
UK Funded AME - - -

Table 6.10: Summary of total 2020-21 Local Government Funding

£m
Budget Core Local Government Allocations (Table 6.11) 10,907.0
Revenue Funding within other Portfolios (Table 6.14) 428.7
Total Local Government Finance Circular 11,335.7
Local Government funding outwith core settlement (Table 6.15) 580.3
Total Scottish Government Funding to Local Government 11,916.0

Table 6.11: Local Government Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2018-19
Budget
£m
2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
General Revenue Grant 6,733.5 6,449.3 6,668.4
Non Domestic Rates 2,636.0 2,853.0 2,790.0
Support for Capital 598.4 703.8 467.9
Specific Resource Grants 273.7 483.6 685.6
Specific Capital Grants 278.0 380.2 295.1
Local Government Advice and Policy - 3.0 3.8
Total Local Government 10,519.6 10,872.9 10,910.8
of which:
Fiscal Resource 7,007.2 6,935.9 7,357.8
Non-cash - - -
Capital 876.4 1,084.0 763.0
Financial Transactions - -
AME 2,636.0 2,853.0 2,790.0
Other Sources of Support
Health and Social Care Integration 355.0 355.0

Note: The Scottish Government guarantees the combined General Revenue Grant plus the distributable non-domestic rates (NDR) income figures.

Table 6.12: Specific Grant Funding and Other Local Government Funding

Portfolio 2019-20
Budget
£m
2020-21
Budget
£m
Criminal Justice Social Work Justice 86.5 86.5
Pupil Equity Fund Education and Skills 120.0 120.0
Early Learning and Childcare Expansion Education and Skills 262.2 463.2
Gaelic Education and Skills 4.5 4.5
Transport, Scotland Inter-Island Ferries Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity 10.5 11.5
Total Specific Revenue Grants 483.6 685.6
Vacant and Derelict Land Housing and Social Justice 11.4 7.6
Transfer of Management of Development Funding (TMDF) Housing and Social Justice 111.8 92.2
Regional Transport Partnership Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity 23.1 15.3
Heat Networks Early Adopters Challenge Fund Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity - 50.0
Cycling Walking and Safer Routes Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity 8.9 8.9
Early Learning and Childcare Education and Skills 175.0 121.0
Town Centre Fund Finance, Economy and Fair Work 50.0 -
Total Specific Capital Grants 380.2 295.0

Table 6.13: Scottish Fiscal Commission (SFC) Non Domestic Rate Income Forecast

2019-20
£m
2020-21
£m
2021-22
£m
2022-23
£m
2023-24
£m
Non-Domestic Rates Estimate 2,806 2,749 3,012 3,345 3,423
Distributable Amount 2,853 2,790 2,962 3,295 3,423
Prior Year Adjustments (36) (84) 0 0 0
Yearly Balance 1 (125) 50 50 0
Cumulative Balance 25 (100) (50) 0 0

Table 6.14: Revenue Funding within Other Portfolios to be Transferred In-Year

2019-20
£m
2020-21
£m
Local Government Budget Settlement 10,869.9 10,907.0
Additional Revenue
1+2 Languages 3.0 3.0
Additional Support for Learning - 15.0
Appropriate Adults 1.0
Blue Badge Scheme 0.7 0.7
British Sign Language 0.2 0.2
Building Standards Fees (1.5) (1.5)
Carers Act - 11.6
Child Burial and Crematoria Charges 0.3 0.3
Children and Young People Act 1.0 1.0
Community Justice Transitional Funding 1.6 1.6
Customer First 1.5 1.4
Discretionary Housing Payments 63.2 71.8
Early Learning and Childcare Expansion 24.1 24.1
Former Housing Support Grant 1.0 1.0
Free Personal and Nursing Care - 2.2
Free Sanitary Products in Public Places 2.8 2.8
Free Sanitary Products in Schools (listed as tbc in 19-20 budget) 2.1 2.1
Health and Social Care - 57.2
Health and Social Care and Mental Health 120.0 120.0
Living Wage - 25.0
Mental Health Officer Shortfall - 0.5
Rapid Rehousing Transition Plans - 8.0
School Clothing Grant 6.0 6.0
School Counselling - 4.0
Scottish Welfare Fund 37.9 40.9
Seatbelts on School Transport - 0.2
Self-Directed Support 3.5 3.5
Sensory Impairment 0.3 0.3
Temporary Accommodation 23.5 23.5
Tobacco Related Issues 1.3 1.3
Youth Justice - Whole System Approach 0.8 -
Total Revenue Funding within other Portfolios 293.3 428.7
Total Local Government Settlement in Local Government Finance Circular 11,163.2 11,335.7

Over and above the money that will be included within the Local Government Finance (Scotland) Order 2020 there are a number of funding streams attached to particular policy initiatives and these are set out in Table 6.15.

Table 6.15: Local Government Funding outwith Core Settlement

2019-20
£m
2020-21
£m
Total Local Government Finance Circular 11,163.2 11,335.7
Revenue
Attainment Scotland Fund 62.0 62.0
Business Gateway 1.7 1.6
City Region and Growth Deals - 3.8
Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company 0.5 0.5
Discretionary Housing Payments (additional element for care experienced young people) - 2.0
Early Learning and Childcare Realising Change 0.5 -
Education Maintenance Allowance 25.0 25.0
Fair Start Scotland 1.1
Local Employability Model 7.1
Parental Employability Support Funding - 5.0
Parental Employability Support Funding Boost - 2.0
Private Water Supply Grants 1.7 1.7
Schools for the Future Programme (19-20 figure lower than budget due to delay) 60.1 72.4
Supporting Post-16 Transitions Towards Employment 4.3 4.3
Support for Bus Services 0.7 -
Support for Sustainable and Active Travel - 5.3
Travel Strategy and Innovation 4.1 4.1
Total Revenue 160.6 197.9
Capital
Capital Land and Works - 22.0
City Region and Growth Deals 187.8 201.0
Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company 5.0 5.0
Coig Tourist Routes 0.3
European Maritime and Fisheries Fund 0.5 -
Future Transport Fund 18.0 18.0
Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (HEEPS) 49.0 55.0
Regeneration Capital Grant Fund 20.0 25.0
Support for Sustainable and Active Travel 7.0 1.0
Travel Strategy and Innovation - 55.1
Total Capital 287.3 382.4
Total Local Government Funding outwith Core Settlement 447.9 580.3
Overall Scottish Government Funding for Local Government 11,611.1 11,916.0

Local Government Spending Plans 2019-20

To illustrate how local government funding is used across different services, Scotland's local authorities have budgeted to spend the total resources available to them from the Scottish Government's funding and income raised locally through the council tax on services in 2019-20 as set out in Tables 6.16 and 6.17. It is the responsibility of individual local authorities to manage their own budgets and to allocate the total financial resources available to them on the basis of local needs and priorities.

Table 6.16: Local Government Revenue Expenditure Plans 2019-20

2019-20 Budget Estimate - Net Revenue Expenditure 2019-20
Budget
£m
Education 5,557
Social Work 3,414
Environmental Services 699
Culture & Related Services 554
Roads & Transport 377
Planning & Development 221
All other service expenditure* 698
Non-service expenditure 1,114
Total Revenue Expenditure 12,634

* Other service expenditure includes non-housing revenue account housing and central services.
A full breakdown of these budgeted amounts including individual local authority figures are available via the following link: https://www2.gov.scot/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Local‑Government‑Finance/POBEStats

Table 6.17 Local Government Capital Expenditure Plans 2019-20

2019-20 Budget Estimate - Gross Capital Expenditure 2019-20
Budget
£m
Housing Revenue Account (HRA) 1,107
Education 869
Roads & Transport 607
Planning & Development 395
Culture & Related Services 161
Environmental Services 386
All other expenditure 679
Total Capital Expenditure 4,204

https://www2.gov.scot/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Local‑Government‑Finance/Publications/CPOBE
These capital expenditure figures represent the total budget allocated to projects in 2019-20. The final outturn figures are likely to be lower due to project slippage and expenditure being delayed into 2020-21.

Contributions to National Outcomes

This table summarises the portfolio's contributions to the Outcomes of the National Performance Framework.

Table 6.18: National Outcomes

Housing Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Poverty, Economy, Environment

The budget supports the delivery of more quality affordable warm homes and assistance to eligible households through the Warmer Homes Scotland scheme supporting hundreds of jobs. It funds a range of activities including action to end homelessness and funding for adaptations for older and disabled Registered Social Landlord (RSL) tenants.

By setting targets for reducing extreme fuel poverty and implementing a definition that is closely aligned to income poverty in the Fuel Poverty (Targets, Definition and Strategy) (Scotland) Act 2019, we are prioritising households who need support the most.

We are investing a record £3.3 billion to support our ambitious target of delivering 50,000 affordable homes, including 35,000 for social rent, over the current parliamentary term. Our Ending Homelessness Together Fund of £50 million over 2018-23 along with our Ending Homelessness Together Action Plan aims to support prevention initiatives to end homelessness, eradicate rough sleeping and homelessness.

Our investment in housing, will, on average, leverage economic output in the region of £1.4 billion per year, supporting around 10,000 to 12,000 jobs per year in the construction and related industries in Scotland and tackles inequalities.

Scottish Housing Regulator Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Poverty, Economy

The budget ensures we have an independent housing regulator that safeguards and promotes the interests of around 600,000 tenants who live in homes provided by social landlords, people who may be homeless and those who use social housing services provided by social landlords, including Gypsy/Travellers.

It empowers tenants and service users to hold their landlord to account, identifies and raises awareness of risks to tenants and other service users and acts to protect their interests when necessary. Effective regulation of the social housing sector also helps to maintain lender, investor and public funder confidence in social housing.

Third Sector Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Poverty, Economy, Children

The third sector, which includes charities, volunteers, social enterprise and community groups, plays a vital role in supporting communities at a local level through delivering essential services, helping to improve people's wellbeing and contributing to inclusive economic growth. Tackling inequality is at the heart of the sector's mission and a number of organisations and volunteer groups directly contribute to tackling child poverty.

This budget helps to strengthen Scotland's third sector and maximise its impact in communities right across the country, building social capital, improving wellbeing and delivering in partnership with public services in every community. The budget supports a range of national intermediaries and delivery partners, including a network of local Third Sector Interfaces, and helps to deliver Scotland's volunteering framework, strengthen Scotland's eco-system of support for social enterprise and grow the impact of Scotland's credit union.

The sector also contributes to inclusive growth, with the social enterprise community contributing £2.3 billion annually to the economy. The sector as a whole accounts for over £5 billion of economic activity.

Tackling inequality is at the heart of the sector's mission and a number of organisations and volunteer groups directly contribute to tackling child poverty, particularly at a grass roots level in communities. Investment in third sector infrastructure ensures that these groups are supported and connected to local decision making affecting children and young people.

Office of the Social Charity Regulator

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Poverty, Economy

The Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005 sets out the framework within which charities and the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) must operate. As a regulator, OSCR helps to maintain a well-functioning third sector which in turn contributes to the full range of national outcomes.

Governance and Reform Priority

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Poverty, International

The Local Governance Review is supporting efforts to provide Scotland's communities with greater control over decisions that affect them most, while ownership of land and buildings through asset transfer helps to drive change in local areas.

Participation requests enable communities to influence decisions in partnership with public services providers which improve outcomes in local areas.

The Scottish Leaders' Forum is helping to nurture strong collective leadership across sectors through an outcomes-focused approach to the future of public service design and delivery.

Our Open Government work will make sure that those driving and delivering public service reform have the skills, tools and ways of working to engage people across Scotland so that they can see, understand and influence the decisions that affect them. Involvement in the international Open Government partnership will promote Scotland's reputation as a leader on openness and participation.

Planning and Building Standards Priority

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Environment, Health, Economy

This budget supports work to ensure people are safe in their homes and other buildings by strengthening fire safety standards and introducing sprinklers in all social housing. Building Standards plays an important role in responding to the climate emergency by improving energy efficiency in buildings to minimise the impact on the environment. Ensuring our buildings are of high quality not only helps to reduce inequalities by improving people's standard of living, but also helps support the economy, creating confidence and certainty for the development sector.

Planning policy balances development aspirations with environmental protection. National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4) is the spatial response to the climate emergency and will capitalise on opportunities for alignment with infrastructure investment. The principal objectives are to help achieve net zero emissions by 2045 and sustainable and inclusive growth.

The Planning Act ensures we increase opportunities for community engagement, including community-led local place plans, and the Place Principle supports local discussion about the physical elements of places, including green spaces, as well as the social aspects.

Planning policy also supports health and physical activity. The value of the Place Standard in addressing health inequalities is recognised internationally and endorsed by the World Health Organization (WHO). The German national public health organization (BZGA) are piloting the tool under auspices of a collaborative research project. Powerful new digital tools are being developed to inform priorities for investment.

Social Justice, Regeneration and Scottish Child Payment Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Poverty, Health, Education

The Place Principle supports local people to influence decisions on services, assets and investments to achieve better outcomes for people and communities. It encourages better collaboration and community empowerment providing a collective focus to support inclusive and sustainable economic growth.

The Place Principle supports local people to influence decisions on the way in which land and buildings are used. By unlocking the potential of places and the people who live in them we can help drive inclusive growth.

Funding for the Regeneration Capital Grant Fund and Empowering Communities Programme support the development of strong and resilient communities, enabling disadvantaged communities to tackle poverty and inequality on their own terms, through locally-led projects that create jobs, improve lives and together build more successful places.

We are supporting Scotland's towns through our work with Scotland's Town Partnership, and the development of Business Improvement Districts (BIDs), with 39 operational in Scotland. Funding to support Scotland's Town Partnerships and BIDs supports our ambitions to revitalise our towns and create conditions to stimulate inclusive growth.

The Tackling Child Poverty Delivery Plan outlines the comprehensive action we are taking to reduce the number of children living in low-income households.

Our commitment to invest £50 million over 4 years in our Tackling Child Poverty Fund will help children and young people and their families in a number of ways. It will help increase household incomes (parental employment support into work and career progression; Scottish Child Payment) and will help reduce household costs, reducing material deprivation.

It is also helping improve life-long outcomes. As one example of this, increased investment in Children's Neighbourhoods Scotland to over £800,000 in 2020-21 supports engagement activity in local areas, encouraging children and young people, families and local organisations to identify shared priorities for action, positively influencing systems and services.

A key investment this year is the initial roll-out of the Scottish Child Payment, worth £21 million in 2020-21: eligible households will receive £10 per week for every child under 6, with the first payments made by Christmas 2020. At full roll-out, for under 16s in 2022, 410,000 children will be eligible and the Payment is expected to lift 30,000 children out of poverty.

We are taking action to support families and build a Fair Work Future for Scotland through continued investment in a new package of employability support for parents, helping parents to access employment and progress through a career.

Fair and flexible employment and more inclusive workplaces are key to tackling poverty, which is why we are taking action to build a Fair Work Future for Scotland by continuing to invest in a new package of employability support for parents. This is supported by the first investment in the £3 million Access to Childcare Fund to develop childcare solutions that will, alongside the ELC expansion, assist parents to access wrap around care that could assist them to maximise employment opportunities.

The budget continues to support our work to address food insecurity and to improve access to free period products.

Connected Communities Priority

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Human Rights

This budget supports work to build cohesive communities where diversity is increasingly recognised and valued, and communities are more tolerant and inclusive.

To help build stronger connections across communities, we will continue to offer a place of safety to refugees arriving for resettlement, implementing the New Scots strategy. Additionally, we will develop an anti-destitution strategy covering people with no recourse to public funds.

We will work to ensure hate crime is dealt with more effectively and reduced overall, and continue with the implementation of the Tackling Prejudice and Building Connected Communities Action Plan.

We will work with partners and stakeholders to deliver a balanced and proportionate approach to safeguarding vulnerable individuals who may be exploited by or drawn towards divisive and terrorist ideologies.

Health and Social Care Priority

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Health

Integration Authorities have real power to drive change, managing over £9 billion of resources that NHS Boards and local authorities previously managed separately. Pooling budgets in this way gives local systems greater opportunities to maximise the use of all of their resources and co-ordinate the work of general practices, community services, hospitals and third and independent sector to improve health and wellbeing for their local communities.

Based on Christie Commission principles, Integration Authorities plan services across the whole unscheduled pathway extending accountability to better match control and reducing disconnects and opportunities for cost shunting and consequently improving best value. Health and Social Care integration contributes therefore to the wellbeing of Scotland and sustainable and inclusive economic growth.

Competitive Non-Domestic Rates Priority

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Economy

The budget delivers a below inflation increase in the basic property rate ('poundage') delivering the lowest poundage rate anywhere in the UK. The higher property rate (formerly described as the large business supplement) for those with a rateable value above £95,000 will remain frozen at 2019-20 levels and, to help overall progressivity, we will implement a new lower intermediate property rate for properties with a rateable value between £51,000 and £95,000. Taken together these budget decisions will ensure that over 95 per cent of properties in Scotland pay a lower poundage than they would in other parts of the United Kingdom.

The budget also maintains a generous package of reliefs, benefiting over 150,000 properties and worth an estimated £744 million in 2020-21.

Council Tax Increase Capped Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Economy

We recognise that households value being protected from unexpectedly high increases to the council tax they are required to pay and therefore locally determined council tax increases will be restricted to three per cent in real terms (4.84 per cent) for 2020-21, which would increase council tax revenue to be spent on local services by a further £135 million. The Council Tax Reduction Scheme will continue to ensure that low-income households are not required to meet council tax liabilities they cannot afford.

Local Tax Reform Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Communities

Secondary National Outcomes: Economy

The Scottish Government is committed to making local taxation more progressive, whilst improving the financial accountability of local government. During the course of the Budget 2019-20 process, we committed to implement a package of local tax reforms which will deliver the most significant empowerment of local authorities since devolution. We are now delivering on these commitments. For example, the Transport (Scotland) 2019 Act, passed by the Scottish Parliament in October 2019, creates the power for Councils to introduce a workplace parking levy, if it is appropriate for their local authority area. We have also completed a public consultation on a local discretionary visitor levy or tourist tax. The results of this consultation will inform the development of legislation to be introduced in 2020 that will permit local authorities to introduce such a levy, if it is appropriate for local circumstances.

Attainment Gap Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Children and Young People

Secondary National Outcomes: Education, Communities

Closing the poverty-related attainment gap between those from the most and least disadvantaged communities ensures that every child has the same opportunity to succeed and contribute to the economy by achieving the highest standards in literacy and numeracy with the right range of skills, qualifications and achievements.

Early Learning and Childcare Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Children and Young People

Secondary National Outcomes: Communities

There is substantial evidence showing that attending high quality ELC improves children's cognitive, social, emotional and behavioural development, with positive outcomes sustained into later years. High quality ELC is particularly beneficial for the most disadvantaged children.

The expansion will save money for families who already pay for childcare, and so increase households' disposable income. Costs of living and income from employment are two of the three key drivers of poverty. Enabling parents to secure work or work more hours through expanding funded ELC will also increase families' income.

We expect the expansion to improve children and parents' health and wellbeing through helping children to form healthy behaviours and supporting parental confidence and capacity.

Educational Reform Priorities

Primary National Outcome: Children and Young People

Secondary National Outcomes: Communities

This budget supports our work to give every child the best possible start in life and to ensure every child will grow up loved, safe and respected so that they reach their potential. The actions taken to drive progress on improving the lives of children and young people do not take place in isolation: they are part of a whole system.

Evidence shows that children and young people's health and wellbeing are influenced by the environments they inhabit, including: family and parent/carer environment; learning environments (including nurseries and schools); neighbourhood/community environments (including physical and social aspects); and the broader socio-economic context.

1. http://www.fiscalcommission.scot/publications/forecast‑evaluation‑reports/forecast‑evaluation‑report‑september‑2018/

2. The calculation of the 2019‑20 distributable amount, showing how SFC forecasts are used, is shown in Table 6.13 of the Scottish Budget 2019‑20.

3. Provisional contributable amount is reported by local authorities to the Scottish Government after the start of the financial year and determines level of contributions to the pool.

4. Differences between the provisional contributable amount and final audited figures from the previous year are reflected in this line.


Contact

Email: BudgetandSustainabilitySupport@gov.scot