GREATER POWER FOR FALKIRK DISTRICT’S COMMUNITIES
Wednesday, 01 February 2017 11:06
ANGUS MACDONALD MSP WELCOMES THE COMMUNITY EMPOWERMENT ACT
A new law will make it easier for communities in Scotland to take over land or buildings that are currently in public ownership.
The asset transfer section of the Community Empowerment Act (Scotland) 2015 come into force on the 23rd January and allows community-led organisations to request to buy, lease or use any land or buildings belonging to local councils, Scottish Ministers, and a range of other public bodies. They must show how they will use the land to benefit the community. Requests must be agreed unless there are reasonable grounds for refusal.
This is the latest section of the Act which gives more power to Scotland’s communities to have their voices heard in decisions that matter to them, and to take action for themselves.
Falkirk East MSP Angus MacDonald has welcomed this new law, and is encouraging any community-led organisation in his constituency to take advantage of it.
Angus MacDonald MSP said:
“The Scottish Government is determined to give communities more power to decide their own futures based on local need. Having control of land and buildings makes a big difference in enabling community organisations to achieve the changes they want, and I would like to see more groups have this opportunity.
“Every area has a building or land that could be of much more benefit to the local community if it was the local people themselves who were given the support and the freedom to make a difference.
“Taking over land or buildings can give communities the opportunity to deliver services. It can also provide jobs, skills and training, and opportunities to generate income and helps groups to become more sustainable, building confidence and a sense of community.
“There are many examples around the country where asset transfer has taken place and real benefits are being delivered by community organisations. I would like to see more organisations within my constituency take advantage of the benefits this new law allows to ensure that our communities make the decisions that are in their best interests.”