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Solidarity Against Neoliberal Extremism
Glasgow's Debt - Glasgow's Promise

Sat 12 October 2019

Reborn as neoliberal bodies, local councils are all about business approaches, contracting out and hiving off. Financialisation competes with services for their attention. But far from making cities financially robust, many are now struggling for survival. They are a prime example of the collapse of neoliberal economics in the age of austerity.

Glasgow has a complex structure of in-house services, agencies, arms length bodies and loans of £1.5bn, plus PFI repayments, plus mortgages on land and property.

For the next two years the City has a funding gap of £129.1 million over the period 2018/19 to 2020/21 and according to Audit Scotland, Glasgow now faces a period of unprecedented financial pressure.

Is this the only way to run a city? What are other cities doing that we could learn from. Nobody wants to go back to the paternalism of the pre-1980s council. Can we have a future where citizens are informed about the City’s finances, and engaged in deciding how to use our money? SANE’s Critical Citizen project is drafting a Humanifesto for the city and at this our first drafting session we will look in greater depth at the City’s finances and alternatives to the current approach.

Programme:
11.30am: Doors open and registration
12noon: Introduction to the Critical City project – Mark Langdon
12.15pm: Part 1 The debt and what it bought us
Exploring the city’s finances with Research for Action , a workers co-operative producing research to support social, economic and environmental justice.
1.30pm: Break for Coffee
2pm: Part 2 The Alternatives
How Glasgow Can Buy Back The Buses - Ellie Harrison, Get Glasgow Moving
Municipal Bonds – Local Ownership and Supply – The Preston Model - Funding a circular economy – enabling local funding decisions - facilitated by Sue Laughlin
3.30pm: Comfort break
3.45pm: Part 3 Supporting The Critical Citizen Discussion facilitated by Mark Langdon
4.30pm: Ends

Organised by SANE (Solidarity Against Neoliberal Extremism) with support from Get Glasgow Moving - Wellbeing Alliance – Research for Action