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Care home tendering deferral (17/12/09)
The Highland Council is to delay for three months progressing its care homes building programme, which features new homes being built at Fort William, Grantown, Inverness, Muir of Ord and Tain.
The deferral was proposed by the Council’s Administration to allow time for a business case for each of the five new care homes taking into account:
- Revenue and Capital costs, including comparisons with the current revenue
operating costs of the care homes.
- The future demand for residential care, including nursing care, and the capacity, both from within the Council and through the Independent Sector, in the five localities.
- Comparative costs within the Independent Sector.
- The Social and Economic impact on the locality
The review will be undertaken by the Directors of Social Work, Housing and
Property and Finance and will be completed by 31 March 2010.
Three of the homes - Fort William, Inverness and Muir of Ord – are ready to go out to tender at the end of January 2010. The estimated cost is £18 million. The other two locations for new care homes are at Grantown and Tain.
In recommending a deferral, Councillor David Alston, Budget Leader, said the decision to commit to the construction of five new homes was taken at a time when there was an assumption that budgets would grow year on year.
He said: “We are facing a quite different future, and it would be a dereliction of duty if we did not fully scrutinise these major spending proposals. The proposal today is not about taking decisions on the care homes. We are seeking a delay to prepare a business case on each of the homes. We are not pre-judging the outcome.”
Councillor Alston was seconded by Councillor Margaret Davidson, Chairman of the Housing and Social Work Committee.
Councillor John Finnie, seconded by Councillor Alan Torrance, moved an amendment that there be no delay to the programme.
Councillor Alston’s motion was carried by 41 votes to 22. There were 7 abstentions.