Scotland's public finances in 2023-24: the impact of the cost of living and public service reform

Closes 19 Aug 2022

Opened 23 Jun 2022

Overview

Pre-Budget Scrutiny - Aims

The Committee would like to hear your thoughts on this topic as part of its pre-budget scrutiny.

Pre-budget scrutiny aims to:

  • influence how the Budget is prepared
  • improve transparency and increase public awareness of the Budget
  • consider how the Scottish Government’s Budget for 2022-23 should respond to new fiscal and wider policy challenges
  • lead to better results and outcomes when compared against the Scottish Government’s targets and goals

Inquiry focus

How will the rising cost of living impact on the Scottish Budget in 2023-24? Will the Scottish Government’s proposals for reforming the public service deliver the efficiencies expected?

These and other questions are the focus for the committee’s pre-budget 2023-24 scrutiny.

What are your views? Tell the Committee by sharing your views here.

The Committee welcomes responses to any, or all, of the questions below. Where respondents recommend additional expenditure in any policy area, they should also identify where this additional expenditure should come from.

Questions

1. The Scottish Government’s Resource Spending Review assumes that the current taxation policies are maintained while funding for health and social care and social security is prioritised. Are these the right priorities and approach for the Scottish Budget 2023-24 and until 2026-27?

2. The Scottish Fiscal Commission (SFC) notes that Scottish income taxes have grown more slowly than the rest of the UK and is forecasting Scottish taxes to be around £360 million less in 2023-24 than they would be without income tax devolution. The SFC is also forecasting that, as a result of forecast error, the Scottish Budget in 2023-24 could be £221 million lower. How should the Scottish Government’s Budget 2023-24 respond to this challenge?

3. How should the Scottish Government respond to inflationary pressures and the cost of living crisis in its Budget 2023-24?

4. The Spending Review identifies key areas of reform over the lifetime of the Parliament to support its priorities in the Spending Review, including delivering efficiency savings across the public sector. How should the Scottish Government approach each of these areas to achieve efficiencies while also maintaining effective public services?

  • digitalisation
  • maximising revenue through public sector innovation
  • reform of the public sector estate
  • reform of the public body landscape
  • improving public procurement

5. How effective do you think these reforms will be in delivering efficiency savings in the Scottish Budget 2023-24, and beyond? If you have additional or alternative priorities for achieving efficiencies (for example within your public sector area), please provide details.

6. What impact will the Spending Review priorities have on the delivery of national outcomes in the National Performance Framework?

7. How should the Scottish Government target spending in its budget to achieve net zero targets?

8. How has the Scottish Government reflected its commitment to fiscal transparency in the Spending Review and how can it best ensure that spending in the Budget 2023-24 can be properly identified and tracked?

How to submit your views

Please submit your views using the online submission form, linked to below.

We welcome written views in English, Gaelic, Scots or any other language. 

The call for views closes on 19 August 2022.

Interests

  • FPA