Inverness Common Fund Budget set for 2023/24

The Inverness Common Good Fund budget for 2023 /23 has been agreed by Members of The Highland Council’s City of Inverness Area Committee.

Leader of Inverness and Area Cllr Ian Brown said: “Members have agreed a revenue expenditure budget of £2.202m for the Inverness Common Good Fund which will be met by revenue income of the same value.

“The fund is administered by The Highland Council with principal regard given to the interests of the residents of the city who reside within the boundaries of the former Burgh and with regard to the need to maintain Inverness Common Good Fund property assets.”

Rent and letting income is derived mainly from industrial estates and the Victorian Market which are under the ownership of the Inverness Common Good Fund.

Councillors agreed to a new source of income, namely the Town House car park, which will be operated as a permanent public car park. A potential annual income of £40,000 per year is estimated to be secured through public parking payments at the Town House car park.

Members also noted variances of expenditure anticipated for the Victorian Market for the final fitting out of new units within the new Market Hall; service charge costs for cleaning, general repairs, and maintenance; and for marketing.

Also noted in the report to committee was the feasibility study required for the Inverness Common Good Fund on Town House Future Planning and the cost of rates, and service charges following the relocation of Highland Council services from the Town House.

The Winter Payments Budget for 2023/24 was protected by Members as they agreed to maintain support for the most vulnerable members of the community with £0.217m budget agreed.

The total budget for common good fund grants for 2023/24 was agreed at £0.161m with £0.121m ringfenced for activities aimed at addressing poverty and inequality in the community.

A wide range of events and activities will benefit from the £0.216m funding agreed for “City Vibrancy and Investment” in 2023/24 with an additional £0.105m carried forward from 2022/23. These include conference support, partnership working with Business Improvement Districts, city promotions and civic hospitality events and national and internal partnership developments such as town twinning’s and memorandum of understanding activities.

Members also agreed to £0.177m funding for community events overseen by the Inverness Events and Festivals Working Group and delivered by High Life Highland such as the Inverness Highland Games, Halloween and Winter Lights events, Bonfire Night, and the “Red Hot Highland Fling” Hogmanay event.

Full details of the 2023/24 Inverness Common Good Fund budget and capital programme approved by the City of Inverness Area Committee can be viewed at: (see item 8e)

13 Feb 2023