09 March 2017
Orkney and Shetland call again for fairer funding for inter-island transport
Following yesterday’s announcement by the Chancellor of the Exchequer of an additional £350 million of funding for Scotland, the Leaders of Shetland and Orkney Islands Councils have written to the Scottish Government repeating their calls for further support for inter-island transport.
Gary Robinson, Leader of Shetland Islands Council: “The Scottish Government has already given – and repeated - its commitment to support the northern isles with funding for lifeline services, but that commitment still remains to be fulfilled. Given the welcome news of a further £350 million for Scotland, we ask that our modest requirement of around £10 million to provide fair funding of internal ferry services be met from this windfall.”
Steven Heddle, Leader of Orkney Islands Council: “We have repeatedly called for this funding to be made available, to bring us in line with other areas of Scotland. As our core funding from the Scottish Government continues to fall year on year, it becomes more and more apparent that this lack of support will have a detrimental effect on the levels of service we can provide to some of Scotland’s most remote communities. We ask the Government to take advantage of this further opportunity to turn the principle of fair funding into a reality, and to give us the support we need.”