January 2016

Scottish Budget – what you say

Following our article on the draft budget, calling for 1% of the 16/17 trunk road budget line to be transferred to cycling and walking, a few people have started copying us emails they have sent to their MSPs…

Below are some excellent quotes!!

The Scottish Government is not making it easy on its policy aims by spending so much on transport modes it claims we should use less, and so little on the modes it claims we should use more.

Spokes is reporting a 25% cut in the CWSS fund in the proposed budget.  Please can the Scottish Government accept Spokes’s Dickensian-sounding request for a measly 1% of the trunk road budget to be transferred to active travel.

I find it hard to understand why your party has not followed the advice of the Directors of Public Health regarding active travel funding, given your apparent concern for the health of our country.

The prioritising of roads is totally in contrast to many stated aims of the Government, including to improve public health,  to promote a big increase in cycling journeys, to work against destructive climate change, and to encourage active travel and public transport.”

Have you emailed your MSPs too?  See our original article for advice.

In answer to one emailer, we again emphasise, as in our original article, that in our view 10% of transport budgets should be allocated to walking and cycling as recommended by the Association of Directors of Public Health and many other organisations.  However, the 16/17 budget process is now at an advanced stage and the Scottish Government has an overall majority, so it is completely unrealistic to expect such a major shift in 16/17.   However, a 1% shift is politically realistic – and it would be enough to prevent the damage that is otherwise likely to happen to cycling investment in many Scottish Councils, as explained in our original article.

Meanwhile we strongly support the efforts of Walk-Cycle-Vote to get political parties to include the 10% figure in their manifestos for the Holyrood election this Spring, and we hope you will do the same.   Any such promises from parties forming part of the new government after the election would then start to take effect in the following financial year, 17/18.

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