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1 February 2019

UK Tory Government Says NO to Funding for North-East Broadband

Banffshire & Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has condemned the UK Tory Government after it emerged that it had turned down a bid from Aberdeenshire Council to the UK Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) for funding to improve digital connectivity in the North-east.

The funding bid from Aberdeenshire Council also included NHS Grampian and is believed to have been for a seven-figure sum.

In a letter to the SNP MSP, Conservative Minister Margot James said there were “stronger bids” and confirmed that the Aberdeenshire bid for UK Government funding had been refused.

Commenting, Stewart Stevenson said:

“It is extremely disappointing that the UK Tory Government have refused this request for funding which came not only from Aberdeenshire Council but also from NHS Grampian.

“It exposes the hypocrisy of the Tory Party in Scotland who complain about the Scottish Government’s record on broadband roll-out when the reality is that this is a matter reserved to Westminster and the Scottish Government is having to step in to ensure the service is rolled-out precisely because of actions like this from Westminster.

“I am sure that officials in Aberdeenshire Council worked very hard on the bid and instead of complaining from the sidelines, the local Tory MP should have been lobbying the DCMS and his colleagues in the Tory Government and speaking up for Aberdeenshire.”

Stewart Stevenson
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