Commission on Local Democracy report

The Commission of Strengthening Local Democracy has published its report on the future of democracy in Scotland.

The report highlights what it sees as the main barriers towards improving local democracy, as well as a series of proposals. The report notes that:

  • 50 years of centralisation has not tackled the biggest problems that Scotland faces
  • For a country with Scotland's relative wealth and strength, the level of inequality today is simply intolerable, and has huge social and financial costs
  • There is a link between the absence of strong local democracy at the moment and the prevalence of inequalities
  • It is communities that empower governments at all levels, not governments that empower people

In response to these challenges, the Commission has suggested a number of measures, including a participatory review of democratic structures, more tax powers for localised councils, a re-investment in community development and a legal obligation for local authorities to support and resource community participation. 

The report is part of a year-long consultation process, which SCDC contributed to.

Download the full report here