When significant powers were first granted to the Scottish Government, it was hoped this would move decision-making closer to the Scottish people and increase accountability to the public.

However, the reality has been that, all too often, devolution has been used as part of a relentless quest for division by the current SNP Scottish Government.

When faced with any criticism of how entirely devolved public services are being run, including our schools, police and justice system, we hear the all-too-predictable response that the Scottish Government doesn’t have enough financial powers to fix the problem.

So often do we hear that anyone could be forgiven for forgetting that Holyrood is among the most powerful devolved parliaments in the world.

But earlier this month, when the Scottish and UK Governments agreed on a new ‘fiscal framework’ for how Scotland would be funded, even the SNP struggled to come up with any meaningful criticism.

It will mean the Scottish Government will continue to be funded through the current Barnett Formula.

This formula gives the Scottish Government over £8billion more than if Scotland were funded in the same way as the rest of the UK.

It serves as an important reminder of the benefits that come with being part of the wider UK economy.

Without this additional money from the Barnett Formula, public services across the whole of Scotland would face drastic cuts.

Ironic, then, that Scotland would lose this formula altogether if the SNP had their way.

As well as extending the Barnett Formula, the new framework will hand more borrowing powers to the Scottish Government, giving them even more power to invest in schools, hospitals, roads and other key infrastructure as needed.

With this agreement, the onus now lies more than ever with this SNP Government to deliver the standard of public services that the Scottish public rightly expects of them.

The financial flexibility that this new framework will deliver means the SNP are all out of excuses.

Record NHS waiting lists, councils brought to their knees with cuts and police services that are struggling to cope – to name just a few – are all problems made by the SNP which must now be tackled by the SNP.

At the same time, this government must finally be held accountable for the hundreds of millions of pounds that have been wasted on ferries that have yet to float or a Deposit Return Scheme which has yet to see the light of day, to name just two examples.

Passing the buck hasn’t washed with Scots for the last 16 years of SNP Government – and it certainly won’t wash now.

It’s time for this government to finally make good on the enormous potential of devolution and fully capitalise on the powers that lie in front of it.