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Local Authority News

Council Get sTough To Create A Litter Free Highlands
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.  
New Day Care Charge
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.  
Councillors Urged To Identify Street Lighting Pilot
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.  
New team to tackle homelessness in the Highlands
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.  
Weight restriction for LGV's on Struie Road
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.  
New Licensing Committee/Board Membership
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.  
Local Business Alerted To Counterfeiting
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.  
Wick High School Update
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.  
New Rector of Wick High School Appointed
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.  
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.