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Local Authority News

Pilot refuse collection scheme begins in Skye and Lochalsh
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.  
Council appeals for help to catch dog fouling offenders
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.  
Littering Fines Issued In Inverness - More To Follow
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.  
Gazetteer of Gaelic Place-Names Goes Online
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-ite na h-Alba (AA), the national advisory partnership to research and establish Gaelic place-names.  
Public Asked For Views On Site Of New Wick High School
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.  
Major Reviews Target Savings And Efficiencies
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.  
Prince Charles Attends Pentland Firth Planning Event At Castle
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.  
Highland Pupils Return To School.
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.  
Highland Secondary Pupils To Receive Mobile Phone Safety Advice
Pupils in Highland secondary schools are to receive guidance on mobile phone safety as they return to school this week.   Advice in a joint letter from The Highland Council and Northern Constabulary to parents and carers of secondary pupils aims to raise awareness and specifically highlight the dangers of young people finding themselves in uncomfortable, compromising or illegal situations as a result of inappropriate use of mobile phones.  
Welcome To Probation Teachers In HighlandThumbnail for article : Welcome To Probation Teachers In Highland
Probation teachers receive a warm welcome in the Highlands For 2010 Seventy five probationer teachers who will start work in Highland schools next week attended an induction day in Inverness today.  The probationers were welcomed by Chairman of The Highland Council's Education, Culture and Sport Committee, Councillor Bill Fernie, and Hugh Fraser, Highland Council Director of Education, Culture and Sport.  
Crack Down On Hardline Debt Collectors
Trading Standards Officers have joined forces with Money Advice Service colleagues on The Highland Council to tackle the "unacceptable and aggressive practices" of debt collectors.   Gordon Robb, principal trading standards officer, highlighted the joint effort to address the problem while presenting the annual report of the Council's trading standards service to a meeting of the Transport Environmental and Community Services Committee.  
Throughout Scotland's Housing Expo a series of seminars, organised by Sust, will offer an opportunity for housing and building specialists to hear expert opinion on a range of special interest topics related to the industry.  Sust is the Scottish Government's Sustainability in Architecture Programme which is part of Architecture and Design Scotland.  
Council Tax Rebate Scam
The Highland Council's Finance and Trading Standards teams have been alerted to the fact that Highland residents are currently being targeted by a Council Tax rebate scam.   The "phishing" scam involves attempts by callers to obtain bank details over the phone, on the false promise of being entitled to receive a rebate on their Council Tax payments.  
Council To Consider ArmsLength Organisation For Culture And Leisure
Highland Council to consider delivery of community learning and leisure services by arms length organisation.   Members of The Highland Council's Education, Culture and Sport Service have agreed to the principle of setting up an arms length organisation to deliver the local authority's community learning and leisure services.  
Care Information Service Available by Phone and Online
The Care Information Scotland telephone helpline and website offers a single point of information on the care available for older people throughout the country.   Care Information Scotland (CIS) was launched earlier this year by the Scottish Government.  
Investigation Into Offspring Of Cloned Cow
A Council spokesman confirmed that officers from the Council's Environmental Health team had visited the farm at Auldearn yesterday (Tuesday) to interview the farmer who owned 2 of the bulls born in the UK from embryos from a cloned cow.   The visit was to confirm information on the bulls and their offspring.  
Fresh Focus For Rural Priorities
Move to benefit more applicants and help smaller projects Changes are being made to the Scotland Rural Development Programme (SRDP) to ensure rural Scotland gets maximum benefit from the Programme.   This will increase the number of business development proposals financed through the SRDP and strengthen the role of local decision-making in community development projects.  
Pioneering New House Building Model To Be Considered
Highland Councillors are being asked to consider investigating the feasibility of a pioneering new model of providing much-needed affordable homes in the Highlands.   It could see a new build programme of 650 houses over a five year period.  
Council To Outsource Culture And Leisure
Council asked to agree principle of outsourcing its leisure and cultural services.   Highland Councillors are being asked to agree the principle of establishing an arms-length organisation to deliver all activity concerning its leisure and cultural services.  
New Director of Social Work appointed
The Highland Council's recruitment panel for director-level appointments has unanimously appointed Bill Alexander as its Director of Social Work.  Mr Alexander will take over from Harriet Dempster, who retires at the end of August after 11 years at the helm of the service.