Council consults on Social Enterprise Strategy for the Highlands
3rd March 2014
`Social Enterprise’ is an increasingly fundamental part of what makes the Highland tick and The Highland Council is looking for input to its strategy.
Link To Draft Strategy
A draft Social Enterprise Strategy for the Highlands covering the years 2014-2017 has been published for consultation by the Council and all interested parties are being asked to take part and help shape the future of this sector.
The strategy sets out the Council’s understanding of the social enterprise sector, the benefits it brings and the challenges it faces as well as outlining its vision towards the development of a more vibrant and sustainable social enterprise community in the Highlands.
In Highland there are over 200 social enterprises and their main activities undertaken are:
· Arts and culture
· Economic and rural development
· Learning and training
· Hospitality and tourism
· Social care
In the Working Together for the Highlands Programme, the Council has a commitment to work with partners to produce a social enterprise strategy. The consultation document covers the outline for the council’s strategy and invites those active within or who support the sector or wider third sector to put across their views by asking a series of questions.
Councillor Thomas Prag, Chairman of the Council’s Planning, Environment and Development Committee said: “Social enterprises are not in it just to make a profit, they foster social and environmental innovation, they are ethical in their motivations, and they are accountable to their employees, consumers and communities.
“There are many brilliant examples in the area already and they are a natural fit with the way we want to do things here. We want to build on these achievements and help foster a more supportive environment in which social enterprise can flourish. This commitment reflects the strong tradition of social enterprise activity and the pioneering spirit and confidence that exists in the Highlands.
“We believe that this strategy will be important in realising the full potential of social enterprise and entrepreneurship across the whole area so I encourage anyone interested in Social Enterprise to provide their comments by responding to a prepared set of questions in our survey.”
The consultation report and questionnaire are now available on the Council’s website www.highland.gov.uk, found in the “Have Your Say” box on the homepage. The link to the survey is also available by visiting https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/J8MMMX2.
During the consultation period the Council will also be holding targeted workshops and meetings with sector representatives to gather opinions which will help the Council make decisions about the way forward.
The findings of the consultation will be brought to the Council’s Planning, Environment and Development Committee.
With Storm Caroline hitting the Highlands yesterday, today's heavy snowfall and the forecast for a drop in temperatures over the next 48 hours, the Highland Council's crews and winter vehicles have been busy in action. The fleet includes 105 gritters, 42 footpath tractors and over the coming months 200 plus staff will be providing winter maintenance services.
Wick Campus, including Wick High School, Newtonpark Primary School and High Life Highland Leisure facilities will remain closed on Friday 8 December 2017. The closure is due to high winds during Storm Caroline today which caused some damage to part of the roof of the Wick campus gym, causing the metal flashing around a roof light to become detached.
Following the high winds forecast and experienced this week due to Storm Caroline, The Highland Council is encouraging landowners to check trees and vegetation near to public roads which may have been damaged. Roads affected by fallen trees this morning were near Beauly; Achnagarron near Invergordon and Lochaber which staff are clearing.
The high winds during Storm Caroline today have caused some damage to part of the roof of the Wick campus gym, causing the metal flashing around a roof light to become detached. The school was already closed to pupils today due to the adverse weather.
Road condition reports by The Highland Council's Community Services for the morning of Thursday 7 December 2017 are as follows: Caithness and Sutherland: Most roads are affected by snow and ice. Treatment in progress.
The Highland Council expresses its deep disappointment at the news of further branch closures by the Royal Bank of Scotland. Leader of the Highland Council Margaret Davidson said: "This will cause real difficulties for many customers and small businesses.
Highland consumers who have lost money to a scam involving payment through Western Union wire transfer between 1st January 2004 and 19th January 2017, are being encouraged by Highland Council Trading Standards to file a claim for a refund with America's Federal Trade Commission in a bid to get some or if not all of their money back. In January 2017, Western Union agreed to pay $586 million for turning a blind eye to scammers and other criminals who used its service to trick customers into paying for bogus prizes, loans, jobs, discounted products and other financial rewards in exchange for money upfront.
The Highland Council and Department for Work and Pensions are implementing plans to improve accessibility to their services. This joint venture will see the jobcentre staff co-locating with the Council and other services in the council's new modern office developments in both Fort William and Wick.
City-region deal investment means that Inverness can now be branded a digital city. Ness WiFi, a free WiFi service, which was successfully piloted earlier this year, has now been rolled out across Inverness city centre, extending to and including areas such as the High Street, the Castle, Eden Court, and the bus and railway stations.
Leisure and cultural venues currently run by council arm's-length bodies will continue to benefit from charity relief from non-domestic rates. Following lengthy consultation with stakeholders, Finance Secretary Derek Mackay today confirmed that the Scottish Government will not be accepting the recommendation of the Barclay Review to end this benefit.
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