Local and national government reaffirm commitment to 1% PB target
PB Scotland is delighted that local and national government in Scotland have reaffirmed their commitment to meeting the target that 1% of local authority budget be decided by communities through participatory budgeting.
During the Covid pandemic communities have been standing shoulder to shoulder with national and local government, working in partnership to help ensure help is delivered where its most needed. People have taken ever more responsibility within their own community through their own actions and in helping evidence where resources can be most effectively invested.
During the past year Scottish Government invited many community organisations and people with expertise by personal experience to come together to deliberate and make recommendations on how we capture and build on the gains made by new ways of working during the pandemic. A central recommendation to government was a call on the public sector to give more control to people and communities over the decisions that affect their lives, including an extension of participatory budgeting, so that communities of place and identity have more say on how public money is spent.
Attention rightly now turns to implementation of these ambitions, which is why the reaffirmation of the 1% commitment is so welcome.
Martin Johnston, Chair of the National Participatory Budgeting Strategic Group said:
“One of the deepest lessons of this last, profoundly painful and sad year is that we achieve much more when we work together, rooted in the wisdom and knowledge of people living in their local communities. Participatory Budgeting is one way in which that collaboration between citizens and government happens and it is fantastic to see this renewed commitment. Over the coming years we must strive to build upon this and expand it to every part of how public money is spent.”
Elidh Brown, tsiMORAY and member of the National PB Strategic Group and PB Scotland Network said:
“I am hopeful that local people will have more choices and see investment made in matters that affect their own lives directly, shifting spend towards creating healthier, fairer, greener and stronger communities, that all can enjoy. I’ve seen through PB how people thrive when they are heard and trusted to know what works well, and the joy, satisfaction and wellbeing that results when people see their choices respected and their dreams and visions supported. I hope we can all build on this together to make sure everyone is, and feels part of, pandemic recovery and renewal.”