Council Tax set to rise despite Argyll and Bute cutting spending

Council tax bills in Argyll and Bute look set to rise by 3%, as the council warns it will have to cut spending by £5m this year.

And despite more than a decade of annual spending cuts, the authority says the following two years will see another £22m of enforced savings.

Next week councillors will discuss a 500-page budget report before making a final decision on February 22 which is expected to see the bill for an average Band D home rise to £1,249.

Nearly 800 people responded to the authority’s latest budget consultation, with many objections to proposed cuts including the closure of public toilets, axing the road safety unit, reducing education management posts and cutting back on community grants.

Aileen Morton: ‘Tough Times.”

Council leader Aileen Morton said: ““These are tough times for local government. Cuts to council funding continue.

“Change in how we support our area and our people must therefore continue. Difficult choices about the work of the council must continue.”

She said that reductions in funding from the Scottish Government for 2018-19 would not be as bad as initially feared, but would still fall by 1.5%.

And she added: Councillor Morton added: “Balancing the council’s budget will be about balancing the conditions and limitations of our funding settlement with the needs of our area and the wishes of our communities.

“We know for example that the condition of our road network matters hugely to local people and businesses.

“Government funding dedicates more money to building early learning centres, which is great, but leaves less for other infrastructure investment such as roads.

“With funding cuts expected to continue in the years to come, a responsible budget will be based on decisions that best serve Argyll and Bute in the long term, as well as now.”

1 Comment

  1. I had imagined that the council budget had not been reduced year but it suits the narrative to tell us it has.

    Putting that aside; what sort of cuts are we likely to get? I see what looks like one man struggling to clean the streets and empty the bins in the town; we surely cannot lose him or have another reduction in the bin collections. We have lots of grounds to look after but not enough staff to weed the planted beds or cut the swamp that is now the skating pond.

    We do have lots of shiny new offices, lots of administrators and, I suspect, lots of social workers with lots of chiefs, on very acceptable salaries. Will we see the focus of the staff reductions in there? Probably not.

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