The Scottish Government has launched the next phase of its Local Governance Review, inviting people to join a conversation called 'Democracy Matters'.
The campaign asks five key questions about how decisions should be made at a more local level. It asks whether communities, of place or identity, should have more control of decisions and what those might be. It also asks how this should look and what new or existing decision-making processes could be used.
The Local Governance Review was launched earlier in the year aims to find out what changes are needed to encourage a more local, participatory and inclusive democracy in Scotland.
A short animation summaries the review and the five questions being asked:
"In modern Scotland power must work in a way that involves and benefits everyone. To get this right, we will review how responsibilities and resources can be shared across national and local government in a way that delivers the greatest benefit to Scotland's different places. However, the starting point must be with our citizens and the power and potential within our communities themselves."
The review encourages people to hold conversations in their communities to discuss Democracy Matters and includes a community engagement fund where groups can apply for £100 - £300 to help make conversations happen. They have also published guidance about how the discussion might work and how it could be facilitated.
The review of local governance was set out in the Scottish Government's 2017-18 programme for government and will be part of the forthcoming Local Democracy Bill.
SCDC has been involved in the development of the review thus far, along with the other organisations and groups from across sectors in Scotland.
SCDC Director Fiona Garven is a member of the Local Governance Review Enabling group. She said:
"We encourage communities of all kinds to have their voice heard as part of this critically important review into how Scotland's local democracy should work. As it develops, we look forward to the ideas and priorities of communities being at the centre of local decision-making, building on the ongoing work of community organisations across the country."