In the run up to Dundee City Council setting its Budget on 12th February I am calling for the council to listen to the people of Dundee when it comes to setting the Budget and implementing cuts. At least 16 Scottish councils will be carrying out some kind of public consultation on their budget proposals. I believe that Dundee City Council should follow this lead and in the future set out the proposals and consult on them. The council should have nothing to fear from listening to members of the public. It is also important that we listen to the organised voice of the workforce through meaningful consultation with the trade unions.
We are around one month away from Budget day on Dundee City Council. Budget Day is an important day and the decisions made on that day have a huge impact on services across Dundee. Councillors are ultimately responsible for the decisions that are made and we should take our responsibilities seriously but that does not mean that we should not listen to the people of Dundee. I think that there should be a formal and meaningful consultation process where the public of Dundee can make their views known. We should give the people of Dundee the information and trust them to have sensible views on the actions which we should take.
Across the country around half of Scotland's councils are holding some kind of consultation about their Budget proposals. I do not think that we should have anything to fear from listening to the citizens of Dundee. The council should aim to be a listening council which takes on board the concerns of the people of Dundee.
Decisions on the council's Budget should not be made in the secretive Changing for the Future Board but should be made in consultation with the citizens of Dundee. A future Labour Administration in Dundee would carry out an open, transparent and meaningful consultation with the people of Dundee on Budget decisions. We believe that the council should share information with the public and give the citizens of Dundee the opportunity to make an input into the Budget process.