A plan to avoid SNP cuts to local budgets and invest in the future:
- We are calling on the SNP Government to set an 11p Scottish rate of income tax in the budget for 2016/17 - 1p higher than that proposed by George Osborne and John Swinney.
- Independent expert analysis confirms our proposal would raise almost half a billion pounds every year to avoid planned cuts to education and other vital local public services, and allow something to be given back to low income workers.
- This is a progressive policy - some of us will pay a little more, the wealthiest will pay the most, but we will all gain from protecting our children’s schools and vital public services.
- One in four workers will pay no more, and one in five taxpayers will end up better off financially.
- Someone on a salary of around £30,000 a year would pay less than £4 a week extra under this plan.
- By contrast, someone on the same £144,687 wage as the First Minister would pay an extra £28 a week (£1,447 a year).
- Under our plan 810,000 workers in Scotland will not lose a single penny.
- Taxpayers earning less than £20,000 will receive a £100 annual boost to their income, through a payment scheme administered by local authorities.
- This would cost just £50 million of the £500 million this change will raise but means that we can boost the incomes of low paid workers.
Given the choice between using the Scottish Parliament's new powers or making cuts, Scottish Labour chooses to use the powers. This is the real alternative to austerity. Not just talking about opposing austerity - but taking action.
On Wednesday trade unions will join councillors in lobbying the Scottish Parliament against the cuts before they debate the budget.
Here is Unite's press release. Unite Scottish secretary Pat Rafferty said: “Make no mistake our councils are being force fed an austerity agenda that’s been manufactured by the Tories in Westminster but delivered by the Scottish government. Invidious choices are being made across the country but the blame will ultimately come back to the Scottish government unless it is prepared to co-operate with councils and trade unions now to explore alternatives."
UNISON's press release and MSP briefing. And Dave Watson's blog post.
GMB press release.
Ken Dugdale's speech. She said:"So please… let’s put aside party politics, let’s come together and do the right thing for Scotland’s future. In the choice between using our powers and cutting Scotland’s future, we choose to use our powers."