Scottish Enterprise describes itself thusly:
Scottish Enterprise is Scotland's main economic development agency, funded by the Scottish Executive. Our mission is to help the people and businesses of Scotland succeed. In doing so, we aim to build a world-class economy.
All very laudable, I think that you'll agree. If only.
Story in full THE Scottish Executive is set to agree a multi-million-pound rescue package for Scotland's troubled economic development agency.
Nicol Stephen, the enterprise minister, yesterday revealed that ministers were looking at a complicated accounting device to wipe out overspending at Scottish Enterprise.
He told Holyrood's enterprise committee that the agency had spent £25 million from last year's budget on economic development projects, but the money should have been set aside to cover "other costs" such as depreciation and property expenses.
David explains why this is a load of old rubbish, by amplifying what depreciation actually is (because obviously the Scottish Executive haven't got a fucking Scooby.
That £50 million total over the two years , combined with an overspend on its budget of £9 million for last year, has left the agency with a total funding gap of about £60 million and jeopardised some projects it supports.
That's right, ladies and gentlemen, the public-sector agency which is supposed, essentially, to help people to run, develop and keep their businesses going is, in essence, bust. Now that, Alanis, is irony. But how did it get to this parlous state?
The overspend was set to be repeated this year by Scottish Enterprise chiefs, who claimed they needed to use the cash to cover the cost of projects, even if that left them with an accounting shortfall.
Right, so basically SE said, "look, we don't have any money, but we'll just keep spending it anyway."
What the fuck? What kind of example does that set for businesses? "Yeah, go ahead, spend money. Nah, don't worry if you haven't got it, something'll turn up."
In SE's case, what turned up was the sodding taxpayer, as per fucking usual. Unfortunately, most businesses aren't nearly so fortunate.