Local Authority News
The Highland Council's Transport Environmental and Community Services Committee has agreed to roll out alternate weekly waste collections to communities across the Highlands as the Council endeavours to be more efficient in the way it delivers services and save up to £500,000 in the process. The challenging timetable of implementations - between April, next year, and April 2012 - is: - Lochaber and Caithness - April 2011 Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey - July 2011 Ross and Cromarty - October 2011 Inverness - January 2012 Wester Ross and North West Sutherland - April 2012 East and Central Sutherland - April 2012 Councillor John Laing, Chairman of the TEC Services Committee, said: "During our budget consultation earlier this year, we received a very clear signal from the public that they want us to increase recycling and be more efficient in the way we deliver this essential service.
A 10-week public consultation gets under way on Friday 24 September on The Highland Council's Highland wide Local Development Plan, which represents the Council's land use vision, strategy and principal, general policies for the whole Highland Council area except that part within the Cairngorms National Park Authority boundary. The deadline for comments is 5 pm on Friday 3 December.
Get ready to dig deeper this October with Highland Archaeology Festival 2010. This two-week festival which celebrates the archaeology, history, landscape and culture of the Highlands, features a packed programme of guided walks, family activities, self-guided trails, evening lectures, special exhibitions, competitions and conferences.
Highland Councillors are being asked to adopt a zero tolerance approach to enforcement of littering and fly-tipping. A report to the TEC Services Committee on Thursday recommends that: _ enforcement officers should target Inverness city and other main towns on a regular basis; the zero tolerance approach to enforcement should be supported by publicity in the local media to advertise the city/towns where enforcement is being targeted; the numbers of fixed penalty notices issued should be published; the number of staff authorised to issue Fixed Penalty Notices should be extended to include Community Wardens from Housing and Property Services; TEC Services and the Housing and Property Service should continue to work with the Police and other agencies to promote a litter free Highlands; and the effectiveness of the zero tolerance litter enforcement campaign should be monitored through the number of Fixed Penalty Notices issued.
From Monday 4 October, The Highland Council is bringing itself in line with most local councils in Scotland by introducing a flat rate weekly charge for day care services. The £5 per week charge incorporates the existing transport charge of 50p per journey to a day care centre.
In a bid to reduce energy costs, Highland Councillors are being invited to consult with their local communities to identify appropriate areas for trialling energy reduction options for street lighting. They are also being asked to support development guidelines that street lighting is only required in new residential areas with more than 15 properties.
The Highland Council is to establish a dedicated team to reduce the growing number of homeless individuals and families in the Highlands. The move by the Housing and Social Work Committee aims to help the Council meet the target set by the Scottish Government to ensure that all unintentionally homeless people have access to permanent housing by 2012.
The Highland Council has imposed a temporary 7.5 tonne weight restriction on a section of B9176 Struie Road. As of today(Friday 17 September) the restriction applies to all vehicles over 7.5 tonnes wishing to travel on the between the B9176 junction with the A836 at Wester Fearn and the junction between the B9176 Struie Road and the U2002 link road to Edderton.
The Chairman of the new Highland Licensing Committee and Highland Licensing Board is Councillor Peter Corbett, Inverness Central. Vice-Chairman is Councillor Margaret Paterson, Dingwall and Seaforth.
Trading Standards officers of The Highland Council are launching an initiative to tackle the sale of counterfeit goods within the workplace. They have written to local employers to advise them of the damage caused by counterfeiting to local businesses, which sell genuine goods.
The Highland Council and the Scottish Government have committed to building a new high school in Wick. The Scottish Government will provide a substantial element of the funding over the next three financial years and the Council has already committed to matching this funding over this period.
A new rector for the 756-pupil Wick High School was appointed on Tuesday 32st August 2010. He is Mr Thomas McIntyre, deputy head teacher at Ladymead Community School Technology College, Taunton, Somerset.
In a move to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill by households and commercial businesses, The Highland Council begins a 6 month trial of an alternate weekly waste collection scheme in Skye and Lochalsh on Monday (6 September 2010). From this date, collections of the blue recycling bins will become fortnightly, alternating with a fortnightly collection of the general refuse bin.
The Highland Council's Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross Education and Enforcement officer James Sanderson is appealing to members of the public in Brora, Golspie and Helmsdale to help provide information which will help him identify persistent dog fouling offenders. Mr Sanderson says a minority of dog walkers are continuously flouting the law by failing to clear up after their dogs.
Ten fines issued during Inverness city centre litter crackdown A recent anti-litter purge in Inverness city centre resulted in 10 Fixed Penalty Notices of £50 each being issued for smoking related offences. Officers from The Highland Council's Transport Environmental and Community Services based in Aviemore, Dingwall and Invergordon were drafted in to Inverness to help mount the crackdown on Thursday 26th August 2010.
A new online gazetteer providing a single authoritative source of information on Gaelic place-names was launched today (19 August 2010) at The Highland Council's Gaelic Committee. The National Gazetteer of Gaelic Place-names is the culmination of 10 years of research by Ainmean-ΐite na h-Alba (AΐA), the national advisory partnership to research and establish Gaelic place-names.
The public is being invited to have their say on the choice of two sites for the new Wick High School. A consultation by The Highland Council runs from Friday 23 August until Friday 1 October.
A number of key strategies, which are aimed at delivering more efficient services and significant savings, have been agreed by The Highland Council's Resources Committee. The reviews surround making better use of council properties, sharing services with partner agencies, reducing the costs of back office support for council services and making it easier on the web for the public to access information and pay for/book services.
The Duke of Rothesay has attended a workshop at the Castle of Mey looking at future opportunities for marine energy in Caithness and North Sutherland. The event was jointly organised by The Prince's Foundation for the Built Environment and the North Highland Initiative in association with the partners in the Caithness and North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership.
More than 31,000 pupils go back to school in the Highlands today (Tuesday 17 August 2010). Some will be returning to schools which have been upgraded over the summer holidays and others will benefit from major projects which will begin during the school session.