Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Aberdeenshire Council kept “in the dark” by Scottish Government budget process, say opposition

Jim Gifford
Jim Gifford

Senior north-east councillors have claimed the Scottish Government’s budget process is keeping them “left in the dark”.

The leader of Aberdeenshire Council’s Tory party, Jim Gifford, last night said the local authority is drafting its 2017/18 budget “full of uncertainty” due to demands made by Finance Secretary Derek Mackay.

Mr Mackay revealed the government’s draft budget proposals for the coming financial year in December, and asked councils across Scotland to accept them by last Friday.

But members of the council’s Tory, Lib Dem and independent opposition group, the Aberdeenshire Alliance, claim that meant they were being asked to agree to the budget prior to being given the full details of the local government funding settlement.

Responding to Mr Mackay, council leaders Richard Thomson and Alison Evison – heads of the council’s SNP and Labour groups respectively – made it clear the council “cannot commit” to a funding package before February 9.

This is when the local authority will meet to agree its own 2017/18 budget.

Last night Mr Gifford, who is head of the Alliance, said the local authority doesn’t “know for sure” what its own funding settlement will be until the “government gets their budget signed off and approved”.

He added: “We are going into a budget process with that caveat hanging over us. It is no way to go through your financial planning, full of uncertainty.”

A Scottish Government spokeswoman said: “It is now for local authorities to finalise their budgets. The Scottish Government has treated local government very fairly despite the cuts to the Scottish budget from the UK Government.

“Taking next year’s local government finance settlement plus the other sources of income available to councils through reforms to council tax and funding for Health and Social Care Integration, the overall increase in spending power to support local authority services amounts to £241million or 2.3%.

“Aberdeenshire Council’s share will see increased spending power of £13.5million or 3.1% in 2017-18, not a decrease.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in