Local Authority News
Inverness, the largest city in the Scottish Highlands, has seen over 17,000 people access its free city centre WiFi in just 6 months following a collaboration between The Highland Council, Purple and Rapier Systems. The Highland Council sought a WiFi solution that would allow them to identify who visits the city and gain a way of effectively communicating with people.
Trading Standards officers at The Highland Council have discovered a new scam threat to local consumers. A local man was cheated out of a substantial sum by a conman posing as a reputable property landlord who used the man's mobile number to find out personal information from his Facebook account.
The Highland Council, one of several local authorities in Scotland which license UV tanning salons, will be conducting an audit on all licensed premises in Highland to verify compliance with EU safety standards regarding the output of ultra violet (UV) radiation. Environmental Health Officers have become increasingly aware of concerns nationally whereby the UV bulb strength in many cases have been found to exceed the standard for such equipment.
Motorists using Highland Council car parking machines will no longer have to search for change with the introduction of ‘RingGo' phone parking payments across the region. RingGo is a quick, easy to use mobile phone service, which lets motorists pay for their parking with a credit or debit card, rather than using cash at a machine.
Prosecuting people who share or threaten to share intimate images without consent will be easier under a new law which comes into force this month. From 3 July 2017, those convicted the offence could face up to five years in prison under the Abusive Behaviour and Sexual Harm (Scotland) Act 2016.
Members of The Highland Council have agreed to form a short life Cross-Party Working group for Inverness Schools. The decision to create the working group was made at Highland Council's meeting on 29 June.
Members of The Highland Council have agreed that an approach should be made to the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport, Shona Robison, to come to meet with the Leader of Highland Council, Cllr Margaret Davidson and the four Skye councillors on behalf of the Skye and Raasay Committee to request that the 24/7 NHS Emergency Cover be reinstated for Portree and North Skye. The meeting with the four Skye councillors will also include Members from Ward 5 (Wester Ross,Strathpeffer and Lochalsh).
Members of The Highland Council have unanimously agreed to the establishment of a joint Committee with Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeenshire Council, Angus Council, Argyll and Bute Council, Comharlie nan Eilean Siar and Moray Council to be known as ‘The Northern Roads Collaboration Joint Committee'. Cllr Allan Henderson, Chair of the Council's Places Committee commended the formation of the new Joint Committee, he said: "I commend this initiative which will help Highland Council and our partner Northern Authorities address the ‘big ticket' roads’ issues that affect us all.
During a debate about the future of Highland Council finances, Leader of the Council, Margaret Davidson, has challenged the Scottish Government to be more open about the funding they provide for local councils across Scotland. "In recent years' we’ve seen too much smoke and mirrors when it comes to the Scottish Government handing out their annual grant to local councils.
FREE Wifi will be extended across the city centre in Inverness this summer. The free service, "Ness Wifi", will be rolled out in the second phase of the Inverness City WiFi project.
Highland Council is delighted and honoured to have been announced as the ‘Most Improved Local Education Authority' and top performing Council in Scotland in Stonewall's seventh annual Education Equality Index. This extremely welcome announcement was made at Stonewall's Education for All conference held yesterday (28 June) at the University of Birmingham.
The Highland Council has agreed to set up a Commercial Board amongst a range of other recommendations to redesign the Council, including strengthening local democracy. The establishment of Commercial Board aims to create a step change in income generation with a social purpose in mind.
Cllr Mathew Reiss, former Chief Inspector with Northern Constabulary, was appointed as the Highland Council's Strategic Lead for Police and Fire at the Highland Council meeting today, 29 June 2017. Cllr Reiss said: "The Council has long had an excellent working relationship with local police officers in the Highlands.
Highland council will hear from the finance director Derek Yule on Thursday 29th June 2017 when he speaks on his paper "Financial Outlook 2018 - 2023". The outlook for council finances as set out in the paper Financial Outlook 2018 - 2023 is for five years of cuts and reductions in services as the forecast is for reduction in grant income of 2%, 3.5% or 5% which would produce a budget gap of £129 million to £187 million over 5 years.
A new service for the bereaved in Highland is launched today by The Highland Council called ‘Tell Us Once'. The service will ensure that when a death is registered in the Highland area, a notification is automatically issued to most government agencies which removes the need for grieving families to notify multiple public bodies.
A £10 million fund to build affordable homes across the Highlands has been announced by Housing Minister Kevin Stewart today (23rd June). The Highland Infrastructure Fund is a partnership with The Highland Council and will support and accelerate the delivery of affordable housing across the region.
The Leader of The Highland Council has written to HMICS to express concerns regarding a potential change to the creation of a single National Database Enquiry Unit (NDEU) for the whole of Scotland, based in Inverness. Leader of the Council, Margaret Davidson said: "I have written to the Mr Penman HMICS to express my concerns regarding the proposed changes to the Inverness Police Control Room.
The Highland Council's People Committee has agreed membership of the Council's new Adult Services Development and Scrutiny Sub-Committee. The Adult Services Development and Scrutiny Sub-Committee will ensure specific consideration is given to the delivery of adult social care services, as part of an integrated approach to all community care services, and will oversee on behalf of the People Committee, the commissioning of social care services for adults from NHS Highland.
The Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters Marine Spatial Plan (PFOW MSP) has won the Excellence in Plan Making Practice category at the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Awards for Planning Excellence 2017. The awards were held in London on 15 June.
Greater direct control of funding by schools will help improve education, Deputy First Minister John Swinney said as he called for parents, teachers and young people to have their say in revamping the way schools are funded. Speaking the day after he announced sweeping new powers for schools, Mr Swinney said it was crucial that funding decisions are taken by those who know children best and know where the funding will have the biggest impact.