Highland Council announces a budget for jobs
The proposals are based on themes which emerged from weeks of consultation with staff, communities, groups and partners. The themes focus on Efficiencies, Income generation, Redesign and a flexible Workforce.
Budget Leader Councillor Alister Mackinnon said: “This is a budget for jobs. We are the second biggest employer in the Highlands and our staff are central to their local communities. Council jobs are fundamental to the economy of the Highlands and we are committed to delivering a budget which protects jobs and services and doing everything we can to avoid redundancies.
“We have engaged extensively in recent weeks and months with staff and communities and we have been working positively across political groups to achieve consensus so that the budget will be supported as widely as possible.
“The £4.2M additional funding from the Scottish Government is very welcome, however we still have a significant budget gap to balance. We plan to use £2.5M of this money to create a change fund which will help us to deliver a programme of transformational change across the Council.”
Leader of the Council Margaret Davidson said: “Despite the cap on council tax being raised, we are proposing to restrict any increase to 3% to protect hard pressed family budgets as far as possible.”
She added: “I want to thank everyone who has participated in the process of putting these proposals together. We have had very honest and open dialogue with all members throughout and I welcome all the views and suggestions we have received. Our final proposals reflect that considered feedback and I am hopeful that all members across the chamber will get behind this budget which is designed to deliver more sustainable services with a more secure and flexible workforce.”
Agenda and Reports available here