SNP slammed for doubling cost of government since coming to power in 2007

The SNP has been slammed for doubling the cost of running the government since coming into power back in 2007 under former First Minister Alex Salmond.

Official figures show the yearly cost of ministerial salaries, excluding the First Minister and Deputy FM, office staff and advisers has risen from £2,428,879 14 years ago to £4,503,805 in 2021 – an increase of £2,074,926.

Overall the extra cost over the course of the entire parliamentary term is £10,374,630.04.

The government has also been criticised for huge increases in staff. When Alex Salmond set up his first government back in 2007 he appointed four Cabinet Secretaries, there are now eight in Nicola Sturgeon ‘s current top team.

While there are 17 junior ministers currently, an increase of seven under the first SNP government.

Scottish Labour says “there is no justifying” the rise in spending on government over the last 14 years.

Anas Sarwar’s party also pointed out the number of special advisers has also increased from nine to 17 over the time that the SNP has been in power in Scotland.

Scottish Labour’s Finance spokesperson Daniel Johnson said: “There is no justifying these astounding increases.

“For years the SNP have inflicted savage austerity on Councils while sparing no expense funding their own bloated operation.

“These eye-watering increases might not sting so much if we could see what we were getting in return.

“Instead taxpayers are coughing up record amounts of money for a government delivering record levels of failure.

“No amount of money can buy the SNP a vision for Scotland.”

A spokesperson for the Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “Labour’s so-called analysis completely overlooks the fact that the responsibilities of the Scottish Government have increased substantially since 2007.

“Every new power devolved has been used to make Scotland a fairer country – whether that it is the more progressive income tax policy or the new social security system. The government is also continuing to deal with the unprecedented challenges of Brexit and the global pandemic.

“Since 2007, the SNP Government has transformed education, strengthened our NHS, introduced Scotland’s Baby Box and delivered over 100,000 affordable homes.

“While Labour snipe from the sidelines, the SNP Scottish Government is getting on with the day job – delivering progress and pursuing a progressive, transformative vision for the people of Scotland.”

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