Housing, Regeneration and Community Empowerment Support (Almond Valley)

– in the Scottish Parliament on 27th March 2019.

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Photo of Angela Constance Angela Constance Scottish National Party

3. To ask the Scottish Government how it is supporting housing, regeneration and community empowerment in the Almond Valley constituency. (S5O-03054)

Photo of Aileen Campbell Aileen Campbell Scottish National Party

The Scottish Government supports activity in those areas in a number of different ways. The Scottish Government’s affordable housing investment in West Lothian will be substantial, at more than £60 million over the current parliamentary session. In the Almond Valley constituency, we will support the building of high-quality affordable housing in Livingston, Fauldhouse, Polbeth, Pumpherston, East Calder and West Calder.

Through our empowering communities programme, the regeneration capital grant fund and the recently announced town centre fund, the Scottish Government will support locally developed regeneration projects to tackle inequality and deliver inclusive growth in West Lothian.

Photo of Angela Constance Angela Constance Scottish National Party

West Calder and Harburn Community Development Trust has developed plans—in consultation with the community—for the old co-operative building in West Calder, in essence to celebrate and use that asset of our heritage to create a regeneration hub and a modern community facility.

Can the cabinet secretary advise on how local organisations can access and pursue regeneration funding, and will she meet me to discuss further how local organisations across Almond Valley and West Lothian can pursue regeneration funding?

Photo of Aileen Campbell Aileen Campbell Scottish National Party

I would welcome the chance to meet Angela Constance to discuss what sound like incredibly exciting developments and projects in her constituency. On funding, we provide the regeneration capital grant fund, which is one example of how we are working together with the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities and local government to support community-led regeneration in our most disadvantaged and fragile communities.

We recently announced the projects that are due to be supported by that fund, and plan to invite proposals from local authorities and other eligible applicants for 2020-21 funding soon. I am happy to meet Angela Constance to engage with her on the projects and ensure that we furnish her with information that will support her constituents.

Photo of Mark Griffin Mark Griffin Labour

Can the cabinet secretary tell me why, in a decision that has clearly not empowered communities, the Government overruled its own reporters and rode roughshod over the views of my constituents, permitting the likely closure of the Bo’ness road?

The Deputy Presiding Officer:

That question is not about Almond Valley constituency matters. However, if the cabinet secretary wishes to answer it she can.

Photo of Aileen Campbell Aileen Campbell Scottish National Party

It might be difficult to furnish Mark Griffin with information, given that the application and planning process are live. If he wants to raise those issues, he can do so through the usual channel of writing to us.