YOU can tell a lot about someone from how they spend their money, or at least whatever they have left after the essentials have been paid for.


We all prioritise what's most important to us.

It's certainly true that governments allocate their budgets according to what is most important to them.

As the old saying goes: follow the money.

I've been thinking about these things in recent days because the council is setting its annual budget on Thursday. After almost a year in the preparation, it will all become clear how Glasgow City Council will balance the books, and the exact amounts we will allocate to the range of worthwhile and competing priorities - repairing potholes, cleaning our streets, funding our schools, caring for the vulnerable, offering apprenticeship and job opportunities to our young people, and so on.

In recent years, in spite of big cuts to our budget, your Labour council has allocated the money to implement our manifesto commitments including: the biggest youth apprenticeship and jobs programme of its kind in the UK, £100 each winter for every pensioner aged 80 or older to help them keep warm, £250 million to improve our primary and ASL school buildings, and a network of renowned nurture classes across the city which intensively support our youngest primary children who need extra help to benefit from schooling.

We all know times have been tough for a few years now, made all the harder by the deep cuts on public spending which the Tories have imposed.

They're the same old nasty party.

It's been estimated that the Scottish Government has faced a 10% real terms reduction in its budget over the last five years.

However, over the same period Scottish councils have faced a 24% cut.

In other words, the Edinburgh government has not only kicked down to councils the level of cut they've had from the UK Treasury, but they have more than doubled the cuts as a result of their own decisions.

The whole point of having a Scottish Parliament is to protect us from the Tories not make things a whole lot worse.

This is the money that pays for our schools, roads, museums, social work services, cleansing and refuse, the major events that attract so many visitors and support thousands of local jobs, and so on.

As if that's not bad enough, Glasgow's share of this reduced local government budget has been cut every year that the SNP has been in power.

A double whammy, made in Scotland by nationalists.

It's startling but true that if Glasgow received the same percentage share of the available local government budget in Scotland this year as we did in 2007, Glasgow would have an additional £109 million to spend on our vital public services.

Whatever image they try to portray, it's very clear from how they actually choose to spend their money that Glasgow is not a priority for the SNP.

And if you find that hard to believe - just follow the money.