Responding to the announcement of the UK Government’s budget date as Wednesday 11 March, Renfrewshire North and West MSP and the Scottish Government’s Finance Secretary, Derek Mackay, said:
“The UK Government gave no prior notice before announcing their budget date, showing complete disrespect for the Scottish Parliament and our budget process. I received no response to our repeated calls for clarity on the budget date, including the most recent letter sent to the Chancellor just two weeks ago.
“The UK Government’s approach to the Scottish budget is completely unacceptable – the delay of over four months since their original planned date cannot be blamed on the general election, and suggests a disregard for devolution and a lack of fiscal responsibility.
“The failure of the UK Government to publish its budget at an earlier time means we do not have clarity on the funding available for our schools, hospitals and other vital public services in Renfrewshire and communities across Scotland. Despite this, we remain focused on introducing a Scottish budget for 2020-21 at the earliest practical opportunity.
“We will continue to engage with the Scottish Parliament and the Scottish Fiscal Commission over how best to respond to what are exceptional circumstances, and an announcement on the proposed date for introduction of the new Scottish Budget will be made in due course.”