Draft Budget 2017-18


About the Inquiry

Information about the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee's consideration of the Draft Budget 2017-18. 


Call for Written Evidence

Budget background

The Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee launched a call for written evidence on Friday 7 October 2016 from all interested parties as part of its consideration of the Scottish Government 's Draft Budget 2017-18. 

The yearly budget process requires all committees to consider the draft budgets relevant to their particular remits and to report to the Finance Committee. While the Draft Budget is not expected to be laid until later in the year, the Committee is undertaking pre-budget scrutiny in advance of its introduction.

Focus on spending outcomes

As the majority of the budget within the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform portfolio is expended by public bodies and executive agencies, the Committee has agreed to concentrate its scrutiny of the budget on the outcomes of their work and the extent to which these outcomes have met the Scottish Government’s national objectives. This approach will look back at outcomes achieved to date and look forward to the 2017-18 spending period. 

Specifically, the Committee has agreed to focus on the work of two public bodies – Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) – as well as the Scottish Government’s Marine Scotland directorate. 

The Committee is specifically looking for responses to address how SEPA, SNH and Marine Scotland have contributed to the Scottish Government’s national objectives from 2011 and whether the success of meeting these objectives may have been affected by:

  • a declining budget over a number of years;
  • challenges faced in maintaining existing functions; 
  • the need to respond to changing priorities.

In response to the call for evidence, the Committee received written evidence which can be viewed at the link below:

Read the written evidence

For guidance on how written evidence is handled, please see the following link:

Policy on treatment of written evidence by subject and mandatory committees 

Next steps

The evidence received will inform evidence sessions in November with SEPA, SNH and Marine Scotland. The Committee will then hear from the Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform once the budget is published, before reporting to the Finance Committee in early January 2017. 


On 10 March 2017, the Committee received correspondence from the Convener of the Finance and Constitution Committee announcing the publication of the Budget process review group's interim report for consultation.

On 24 April 2017, the Convener sent a letter to the Convener of the Finance and Constitution Committee in relation to the Budget review process and climate change scrutiny of the draft budget. This is in  response to the letter the Committee received on 10 March 2017.

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