“There are examples of public sector organisations which have successfully secured efficiencies and delivered change while maintaining and enhancing delivery standards.

“We believe that securing maximum leverage from the public sector budget requires effective and efficient deployment of resources, constructive partnership working across the public sector and appropriate involvement of the private sector.”


Glasgow Baillieston MSP Margaret Curran said : “The SNP announced £3 million for Aberdeen in the budget on top of last year’s decision to give a special deal for Edinburgh. In contrast, the needs of our biggest city have been ignored.

“John Swinney’s appalling decision to cancel the Glasgow Airport Rail Link will cost Glasgow and the West of Scotland £395 million of investment and an estimated 1,350 jobs.

“Glasgow deserves fairness from the SNP. I will not stand by while other Scottish cities get special treatment and my city is hit with a double whammy of cancelled investment projects and cuts.”


Paisley South MSP Wendy Alexander said : “This cancellation is a huge blow to the West of Scotland economy and to Renfrewshire in particular. It sends the wrong message to business and will damage the long-term performance of the economy.

“I am appalled that infrastructure links that are years in the planning and supported by the Parliament will now apparently be cancelled on a whim.

“The link would have supported up to 700 new jobs in Paisley town centre within three to four years of construction and a further 650 jobs in Renfrewshire and Glasgow. It is a serious blow at a time when we should be supporting jobs not destroying them.”


Graeme Brown, Director, Shelter Scotland, housing and homelessness charity, said: “Investment in affordable housing will fall by £173 million or 27% from this year to next. The Finance Secretary has explained this as being the need to pay back money that was earlier brought forward.

“The draft budget is a major missed opportunity to invest in homes and jobs at a time when private construction remains at a standstill and we hope that this argument will be heard loud and clear as the budget makes its way through parliament.”


SNP MSP Sandra White said : “Having met with BAA last week it is clear to me that costs at the airport were increasing dramatically, and GARL is no longer sustainable given Westminster’s cuts in Scotland’s capital budget.

“With one piece of the infrastructure cost going from £8m to £70m and the overall cost of the project more than doubling the viability of GARL has unfortunately been called into question. The very last thing Glasgow needs is an Edinburgh trams fiasco.

“Investing in Fastlink will fill in the missing links within Glasgow that leave many areas of the city without effective public transport and the city centre gridlocked. In connecting up the city, this will be to the benefit of the people of the city.

“Fastlink delivers for the waterfront, the new Southern General and the Commonwealth Games.

“The SNP Government has committed £2.7bn to transport projects in and around Glasgow with more to come for FastLink which will bring real benefits to the city.

“Reductions in the Scottish Government’s capital budget and rising costs for the GARL are simply not compatible and difficult decisions have to be taken, and priorities made.

“As we have seen with the Edinburgh trams, you cannot sit back and allow costs on transport projects to spiral out of control - particularly at a time when public spending is under serious pressure. Fastlink along with the rail improvements taking place around Glasgow, including to the airport offer a far more cost effective solution to Glasgow’s transport needs.”


Matt Smith, Scottish Secretary of Unison, said : “The public will not support a budget which asks them to bear the brunt of cuts in the middle of this crisis caused by free market madness and bonus grabbing bankers.

“And make no mistake about it - what John Swinney is offering is cuts to public services.

“What we need in this recession with unemployment continuing to rise is support for the public sector to provide essential jobs and services -- not cuts.”


Scottish Building Federation Chief Executive Michael Levack : “With £294m of capital spending brought forward into this year’s budget, today’s draft budget reveals a gaping black hole in funding for capital projects, which must be filled.

“The accelerated capital expenditure included in this year’s budget was badly needed and is helping to sustain the construction industry through some particularly lean times. But as we start to make the first tentative steps towards recovery, to turn off the spending tap next year would be an absolute disaster.

“In the period of tough negotiation between Holyrood and Whitehall which is bound to follow today’s announcement, I hope both sides can put politics aside and recognise the overriding importance of prioritising continued spending on major capital projects to deliver sustainable economic recovery and to prevent a second slump in the building sector.”