Local Authority News
Highland Councillors have given their backing to the business case for bringing air services to the Isle of Skye and are to continue lobbying the Scottish Government and its agencies at the highest level. Following assessment of the business case at the Isle of Skye and Raasay Committee, members of the Council's Planning, Development and Infrastructure Committee had the opportunity to discuss the wider economic and social benefits of having an airport on Skye and examined the short-term action plan to take forward some key development activities.
The Highland Council's Community Services have recently completed a recruitment drive for apprentice mechanics. Over 250 applications were received and nine new apprentices have just started their 4 year training programme.
A paper going to Community Service Committee next week on 3 November, will recommend the establishment of an in-house operation that can provide Amenity Services, including grass cutting throughout the Highlands from next year. Members of the Community Services Committee agreed on 18 August to the preparation of an options appraisal for the Council's grass cutting services.
The Highland Council today agreed the following motion to Council by Leader of the Council Margaret Davidson and Provost of Inverness Helen Carmichael: "The Highland Council believes that local taxes raised locally should stay locally and this is in accordance with the European Charter of Local Self-Government. The Highland Council calls on the SNP Scottish Government to ensure that the full amount (£5m) of Council Tax multiplier will stay in Highland for Highland Education and will not be redistributed to other Local Authority areas.
Following work starting this week on the Inverness West Link route at Tommahurich Bridge in Inverness, road users are being advised that next week the project enters the final stages although a further two overnight closures with local diversions and temporary daytime traffic control measures are required. The first of the overnight closures will be on Monday evening when the A82 at Tomnahurich Bridge will close to all road traffic from 7pm and not reopen until 7am on Tuesday 1 November.
The Highland Council agrees the recommendation of the Redesign Board to retain Catering, Cleaning and Facilities Management/Janitorial Services (CCFM) within the Council. The Council will continue to manage these services in-house under a new Property Management Service within the Council.
A paper on Funding allocations for third sector culture and leisure services went to The Highland Council's Education, Children and Adult Services Committee on Wednesday 26 October 2016. Previously, the Council agreed reduced funding for third sector culture and leisure services at its meeting in December 2014.
Highland Council has agreed the following motion on free personal care:. "The Council notes that, currently, legislation enables personal care to be provide free for people in Scotland aged over 65, provided they are assessed as needing it.
The Highland Council welcomed a visit from Jeane Freeman MSP, Minister for Social Security, on Thursday 20 October. The purpose of the visit is to discuss the Scottish Welfare Fund and Universal Credit and the visit presented an opportunity for senior members and officers to demonstrate best practice in Highland and to put forward views towards the consultation on devolved Social Security in Scotland.
The Highland Council is anticipating it may have to make savings of £47 million to £72 million over the next 3 years, with a budget gap of some £26 million next year (2017-18) The financial environment is very challenging, with an unprecedented degree of uncertainty which makes planning very difficult. There will be a very short timescale to react and provide options for budget savings once the Scottish Government settlement is made known on 15 December.
Dornoch is the only Scottish finalist in the Great British High Street Awards and local Councillor Jim McGillivray is calling for people to cast their vote to give the Sutherland village a chance of winning. He said: "Across all fourteen categories of the awards, Dornoch is the only Scottish finalist, and we're up against Leominister and Stockton on Tees in the Rising Star category, both of which have much larger populations than we do.
The Redesign Board of The Highland Council will recommend keeping Catering, Cleaning and Facilities Management/Janitorial Services (CCFM) in house within the Council. Options for the future management of Catering, Cleaning and Facilities Management/Janitorial Services (CCFM) were considered by the Redesign Board today.
The Highland Council is asking people in the Highlands - ‘Are you ready for winter?'. The Council is again supporting the Scottish Government's Ready Scotland campaign at www.readyscotland.organd urges people in the Highlands to take some time to get ready for winter and all kinds of severe weather.
Trish Robertson has been elected as Culloden and Ardersier Ward Member for Highland Council. The by-election for a councillor to serve the Culloden and Ardersier Ward (No 18) on The Highland Council has been won by Trish Robertson - Scottish Liberal Democrats.
Voluntary organisations and personal licence holders who obtain occasional licences for the sale of alcohol under the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 for events they are organising may shortly also require to obtain a public entertainment licence under the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 for the same event. Premises with a premises licence or an occasional licence for the sale of alcohol under the 2005 Act have both up till now been exempt from the requirement also to hold a public entertainment licence ( PEL) under the 1982 Act.
Business cases totalling a value of around £48 million have been submitted as part of the City-Region Deal. If approved, the money will be drawn down so that work can start on progressing a number of exciting projects in the Highlands.
The timing of the Scottish Government's 2017-18 Budget has been confirmed to Parliament. Finance Secretary Derek Mackay has told MSPs that, subject to Parliamentary approval, the Draft Budget 2017-18 will be introduced to Parliament on 15th December 2016.
For publication on Friday 30 September when consultation portal becomes "live" The Highland Council has today (30 September) launched a modified version of the Proposed Caithness and Sutherland Local Development Plan (CaSPlan), which sets out the vision and strategy for the area over the next 20 years. Following a report presented to the Sutherland County Committee and Caithness Committee on 30 and 31 August 2016, the Caithness Committee decided to propose the removal of two site allocations in Thurso - Site TS12 East of Burnside for Community/public park use and Site TS14 Land West of Caravan Park for Business, Tourism and Leisure which was intended to provide opportunity for hotel development.
Public opinion is being sought by The Highland Council on BT's proposal to remove 178 public payphones from across the Highland region. The Council has today (30 September) launched an online consultation.
Speaking after the first meeting of the Islands Strategic Group co- chaired by Humza Yousaf, Minister for Transport and the Islands and Kevin Stewart, Minister for Local Government and Housing, the Highland Council Leader, Margaret Davidson (Independent) said: "I was delighted to take part in this first meeting of the Islands Strategic Group as it meets to consider the strategic issues affecting all the inhabited island communities of Scotland. I am keen that we help identify and design solutions to the unique needs and challenges these communities face.