Budget proposes a Road to Recovery
Highland Council yesterday announced its biggest ever single investment in roads with an extra £20million capital announced in its budget proposals for the year 2020/21.
The budget proposals were announced by Budget Leader Alister MacKinnon at a press conference at Highland Council headquarters on Wednesday (26 February 2020).
To support the investment in roads there are proposals to increase Council Tax by 4.84% (just over £1 per week for those households on Band D) - which is broken down to 3% to balance the budget and 1.84% for investing in roads.
Council Tax Reduction recipients will continue to be protected (generally Bands A-C).
The increase would enable a fund of £20million for capital schemes and an additional £1.3million of annual revenue for road maintenance.
Leader of the Council Margaret Davidson said: “This budget is a road to recovery for the Council. We need to build our Reserves for a sustainable future; invest in Redesign in order to transform the Council; and make substantial improvement to our Roads.”
Budget Leader Alister MacKinnon added: “These are ambitious budget proposals which also seek to invest in people, skills, plant and places. It also provides a platform to invest in local economies and seek match funding opportunities.
“The budget has also been shaped to deliver sustainability for local communities, to fund work to achieve efficiency and improvement, to restructure our services to enable change and address climate change, storm damage and future resilience.”
Depute Leader Alasdair Christie said: “The investment in our roads network helps keep our communities connected, it is essential for business and crucial for emergency services in the delivery of care. We have listened to our communities and our staff and roads are an area they want investment in.”
Budget proposals will be discussed at the Council’s special meeting on 5 March 2020.