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Open Access research with a European policy impact...

The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde's Open Access research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of Open Access research papers by Strathclyde researchers, including by researchers from the European Policies Research Centre (EPRC).

EPRC is a leading institute in Europe for comparative research on public policy, with a particular focus on regional development policies. Spanning 30 European countries, EPRC research programmes have a strong emphasis on applied research and knowledge exchange, including the provision of policy advice to EU institutions and national and sub-national government authorities throughout Europe.

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Excessive and unreasonable - the politics of the Scottish hit list

Midwinter, A.F. and Keating, M. and Taylor, P. (1983) Excessive and unreasonable - the politics of the Scottish hit list. Political Studies, 31 (3). pp. 394-417. ISSN 0032-3217

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Abstract

The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Scotland) Act marks a major change in central-local relations in allowing selective intervention in the expenditure decisions of individual councils. The criteria for action, based upon the concept of 'excessive and unreasonable' expenditure are broadly drawn. In taking action against seven councils in 1981-2, the Scottish Office applied its own criteria inconsistently. The case against the councils lacked intellectual credibility and an alternative 'hit list' could as plausibly be produced. The councils' reactions and the exchanges with the Scottish Office show a varied pattern, with a minority stressing the principle of local autonomy. The Act has failed to achieve the objectives which central government appeared to have in mind. It has, instead, further eroded local autonomy and destabilized central-local relations in Scotland.