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Today
Roads Take The Big Budget Hit - Caithness Faces Cut Of £2.4 Million In Roads Spending In 2024/25
THE amount of money which will be spent on Caithness roads in the coming financial year is expected to drop from £3 million to about £600,000.   The £2.4 million reduction was highlighted by Thurso and Northwest Caithness councillor Matthew Reiss at the most recent meeting of the Thurso Community Council.  
Today
Better Kips For Better Trips: £16 Million Boost To Transform Truckstops For Lorry DriversThumbnail for article : Better Kips For Better Trips: £16 Million Boost To Transform Truckstops For Lorry Drivers
38 truck stops in England will be upgraded with new showers and restaurants, more secure fencing around rest areas and new parking spaces for HGVs.   38 truckstops will deliver better rest areas, improved welfare facilities and more secure parking.  
Today
Scotland's Net Zero Future At Risk Without Funding Boost For Clean Heat, Finds ReportThumbnail for article : Scotland's Net Zero Future At Risk Without Funding Boost For Clean Heat, Finds Report
Scotland needs to leap from retrofitting 5,000 homes a year to over 100,000 to reach net zero target.   Scottish government clean heat support needs to roughly triple to over £1 billion per year.  
Today
£360 Million To Boost British Manufacturing And R And DThumbnail for article : £360 Million To Boost British Manufacturing And R And D
Chancellor to announce significant funding package for R&D and manufacturing projects across the life sciences, automotive and aerospace sectors.   £92 million joint government and industry investment to expand facilities to manufacture life-saving medicines and diagnostics products.  
Today
Short-term lets through online collaborative economy platforms, UK - Quarter 3 (July to Sept) 2023Thumbnail for article : Short-term lets through online collaborative economy platforms, UK  - Quarter 3 (July to Sept) 2023
Number of guest nights, nights, and stays for short-term lets offered via online collaborative economy platforms (Airbnb, Booking.com and Expedia Group).   From July to September 2023, there were nearly 2.8 million stays in short-term lets booked through the three online collaborative economy platforms in the UK (Airbnb, Booking.com and Expedia Group); this totalled nearly 28.9 million guest nights with an average of 313,879 guest nights each day.  
Today
UK Trade In Goods, Year In Review - 2023Thumbnail for article : UK Trade In Goods, Year In Review - 2023
The value of total goods imports decreased by £52.2 billion (8.2%) in 2023 compared with 2022, and total goods exports fell by £17.4 billion (4.4%), primarily because of falling imports and exports of fuels.   After adjusting for inflation, the total imports of goods decreased by £37.8 billion (7.4%) in 2023 compared with 2022, while total goods exports fell by £15.2 billion (4.6%).  
Today
Do You Trust Government? - Read The ONS Report - Trust In Government, Uk: 2023Thumbnail for article : Do You Trust Government? - Read The ONS Report - Trust In Government, Uk: 2023
Estimates of trust in government and institutions, satisfaction with public services, and political attitudes, collected as part of an international research project.  These are official statistics in development.  
Yesterday
Debate On The Introduction Of Energy Rebates For Highlands And Islands At UK Parliament 6 MarchThumbnail for article : Debate On The Introduction Of Energy Rebates For Highlands And Islands At UK Parliament 6 March
A Westminster Hall debate has been scheduled for 9.30am on 6 March on the introduction of energy rebates for Highlands and Islands.  The debate will be opened by Drew Hendry MP.  
Yesterday
Political Perspective On A Council That Refused The SNP Council Tax Freeze And Went For Increase Of 10 Percent
Highland councillors last Thursday moved to accept the council tax freeze announced by the SNP/Greens and get more money to compensate.  Even with that several cuts are coming to services.  
Yesterday
Preventing Childhood Obesity - Funding To Help Families In Some AreasThumbnail for article : Preventing Childhood Obesity - Funding To Help Families In Some Areas
Projects that work with children and families to prevent childhood obesity and reduce health inequalities are benefitting from more than half a million pounds of investment.   Ten projects across Scotland will share £538,141.  
Yesterday
£1.8 Billion Benefits Through Public Sector Productivity DriveThumbnail for article : £1.8 Billion Benefits Through Public Sector Productivity Drive
New plans for public sector productivity will deliver up to £1.8 billion worth of benefits by 2029.   New plans for public sector productivity will deliver up to £1.8 billion worth of benefits by 2029.  
Yesterday
Fraser Of Allender Focus On A Council Tax Stooshie
When the Scottish Government announced its package aimed at convincing councils to freeze council tax rates next year, the noises from councils weren't particularly happy ones.  The offer had apparently been upped from the £144 million in the Budget documents to £147 million, which is now quoted as the figure already allocated by the Deputy First Minister.  
2/3/2024
Anger And Despair In Caithness As Region Faces Depopulation CrisisThumbnail for article : Anger And Despair In Caithness As Region Faces Depopulation Crisis
The Scottish Government unveiled an action-plan to tackle the issue amid growing fears of widespread school closures.   Despair about reduced maternity services, potholes and a failure to tackle depopulation has turned to anger in Caithness.  
2/3/2024
Reduced Working Week For Healthcare Staff In Scotland - Good Or Bad Can The Health Service Afford It
NHS Agenda for Change staff - including nurses, midwives, paramedics, allied health professionals, porters and others - will see a reduction of 30 minutes in their working week from April 1 this year.   The move follows a recommendation from a working group set up to implement a previous commitment to cut the number of working hours as part of the 2023/24 pay deal.  
2/3/2024
Thousands Of Children And Young People Will Benefit From Expanded Mental Health Hubs In England
Thousands of children and young people will benefit from expanded mental health hubs as the government will offer more funding for local communities.   Extra funding for early support hubs to help children and young people receive better mental health support across the country 24 hubs will receive a share of almost £8 million.  
2/3/2024
What will be in Jeremy Hunt's spring budget 2024?Thumbnail for article : What will be in Jeremy Hunt's spring budget 2024?
So Highland had its local budget on Thursday and like buses another budget is arriving next week.   Here is a podcast with experts talking about what might come with the UK budget.  
2/3/2024
Chancellor Backs British Business With Pension Fund ReformsThumbnail for article : Chancellor Backs British Business With Pension Fund Reforms
The Chancellor has today (2 March 2024) announced the reforms as a further step in the government's plan to boost business and increase returns for savers.   Pension funds to publicly disclose how much they invest in UK businesses compared to those overseas.  
2/3/2024
The Disaster Of Brexit Continues To Unfold - Rural And Island Community Support Plea
The probability is that most people whether they voted YES or NO had little information or insight into what the EU did for us.   Politicians did little to enlighten everyone so here we are with another poor situation and despite pleas to replace EU funds it is unlikely they will ever be fully replaced for rural areas.  
2/3/2024
£250,000 For Refugees Fleeing Conflict - Are Scottish Taxpayers Contributing Twice
Humanitarian emergency funding for displaced people in South Sudan and Ethiopia.   International Development Minister Kaukab Stewart has pledged £250,000 in Scottish Government funding for charities responding to the ongoing conflict in Sudan and the impact on refugees in neighbouring countries.  
1/3/2024
Three Year Savings Plan And Investment Strategy Approved By Council As It Sets Revenue Budget - Job Cuts And Potential Cuts Spread Across Services
Members of Highland Council on 29 February 2024 have agreed a package of £54.634m savings as part of a three-year strategy to manage an estimated £113m budget gap.  £26.079m of these budget savings have been agreed for 2024/25, with further savings in years 2 and 3.