Lib Dems win hundreds of millions of extra funding for schools, mental health, business support and councils

At this time of crisis for our country, the very least that the public can expect is that political parties work together to put the recovery from the pandemic first. 
Liberal Democrats have been calling for more funding for mental health, for schools,  to support struggling businesses and for local councils.
So these were our top priorities in our negotiations with the Scottish Government. And, thanks to the efforts of our leader Willie Rennie, the budget now has hundreds of millions of extra funding to help our school pupils catch up on the learning they have missed and to help tackle the mental health crisis. He also secured more funding for local councils and to give businesses the support they have been crying out for. 
People across the Lothians have been very worried about the planned closure of the Eye Pavilion in Edinburgh. We have secured a firm commitment that those vital specialist eye services will be protected.

In total Liberal Democrats secured:
  • An extra £120million for mental health services to pay for new services in communities.
  • An extra £60million to help education bounce back with smaller class sizes.
  • Additional support for businesses and the release of money for local authorities.
  • Fair funding for the internal ferries in Orkney and Shetland.
  • An extra £20million to provide more in-class support to children who need it by topping up the Pupil Equity Fund. This is money paid directly to headteachers to provide additional support to pupils from less well-off backgrounds. This represents a rough 16% increase on the current year. 
  • £15million in special allocations to the North East to pay for skills training, upskilling and business support in a region particularly under pressure given its reliance on fossil fuel industries.
  • The addition of compensation for the council tax freeze into the baseline of local government funding, worth around £90million, which will remove the risk that councils would face a cliff edge on funding next year.
  • £5million more for agriculture transition funding, which rewards farmers for environmental stewardship and helps our climate change priorities.
  • A clear commitment that specialised eye services in Lothian will be protected.

This is the sort of constructive approach that you can expect from Liberal Democrat MSPs and it shows why we need more of them in May. 

Caron Lindsay

Liberal Democrat Candidate, Livingston South


Published and promoted by Sally Pattle on behalf of Caron Lindsay (Scottish Liberal Democrats) both at 139 Buchanan Crescent, Livingston EH54 7EF.

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