Today, Glasgow's Green Group of Councillors released their headline budget proposals for Glasgow's funding crisis. Proposals from Labour, SNP and Greens will be debated on Thursday 10th March by Glasgow City Council when the Council Tax for next year is set. The Council meeting will be deciding how to respond to more than £130M of cuts to the city’s budget over the next two years being imposed by SNP Scottish government.
Green councillors will put forward budget plans which give priority over the next two years by Green investments to generate income and cut our energy costs, by Green action to protect our city's health and wellbeing by safeguarding voluntary sector grants, by a bold Green measure to resource our infrastructure by generating more income through a Tunnel Toll. At a time when Council staff and unions are calling for jobs, wages and conditions to be defended, Green budget plans would take proposed working terms threats off the table.
The budget amendment put forward by Greens offers the choice of softening that blow on frontline services and providing extra money for street lighting, renewable energy projects, and bike hire. Green plans would commit the Council to further cuts in its energy costs as well as ensuring it plays its part in meeting the challenges of climate change by taking action to reduce its carbon footprint.
We are facing a funding crisis Greens would never have let happen. Between SNP tax bullying and funding cuts, building on Labour’s old broken local government finance system, it’s Greens who are seeking out bold local measures to help address the City’s needs, fend off further cuts and put the most vulnerable people of this city first.
Specifically, the Green budget amendment provides funding to:
- Invest £1.2 million to build 20 wind turbines in 6 sites, generating income and energy for the city
- Introduce a Clyde Tunnel Toll (generating up to £20m a year for roads, pavements and cycle infrastructure) cutting air pollution & tunnel congestion
- Invest £6.7m to save more energy (and money and reduce emissions) in a further phase of 10,000 LED street lights
- Protect the Integrated Grants Fund (IGF) which supports the Third Sector projects supporting Glasgow’s most vulnerable groups
- Build trust with staff and protect service delivery - reject imposition of cuts of £4.5m from review of staff working terms
- Set aside £3.1m to support community management of 19 community centres
- Invest £164,000 to extend Glasgow’s public bike hire scheme by installing 37 additional bike stations