Council prepares to meet funding gap

Councillor Gary Mulvaney

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A series of savings options will be considered by Argyll and Bute Council when it sets its budget in February 2021.

The Policy and Resources Committee recently considered an update on work  to find ways to raise income, make efficiencies, and identify possible savings options.

The council has to prepare to meet an estimated funding gap of more than £6 million in 2021/22.

Council services are exploring savings options within individual services, and across groups of services based on the themes: working digitally, and amenity, leisure, fleet and transport services.

Councillor Gary Mulvaney, policy lead for financial services, said: ‘The harsh fact is that we have to consider savings options none of us want to take but budget gaps demand.

‘In recent years Argyll and Bute has had one of the biggest reductions in Scottish Government funding of all Scotland’s council areas.

‘National priorities and other factors outwith the council’s control mean that savings can only come from a small percentage of services and areas of expense.

‘Our priority is to cover budget gaps as much as possible by making efficiencies and raising income. However, the scale of financial challenge means we have to look as well at service savings.

‘So much depends on how much Scottish Government funding Argyll and Bute is getting for its council services. Until we know that, we have to make plans to meet the estimated budget gap.’

Anyone with views on individual services’ savings options can find out more on the council’s website, and is welcome to give comment by January 11 2021.