Thank Goodness Kezia Dugdale and Andrew Burns are standing up against the cuts to Edinburgh’s budget.
I have lived in Edinburgh since 1996 and it fills me with pride that the city can attract people from around the world to visit, study or work. However, walking around our city centre streets I also feel a little ashamed about what international visitors see.
Our roads are potholed. Too often, our footpaths are grubby and the bins are overflowing.
This is not a criticism of the City of Edinburgh Council’s hardworking staff. Their budget has been cut year on year and its right that education and social care budgets are protected as much as possible.
I do wonder, however, how long the SNP can continue with these cuts before permanent damage is done to our city. It’s not as if the SNP elite in Holyrood could not choose an alternative path.
After years of moaning about a lack of revenue raising powers, the SNP now have the ability to vary income tax bands and rates. They could have chosen to tax the richest 10% more, but instead they chose to raise their tax threshold. The result of this timidity is further cuts to council services the vulnerable need most.
Is this really “Stronger for Scotland”?