Progress for Council's Off-street car parking policy
6th February 2020
At a special meeting of the former Environment, Development and Infrastructure Committee, held in October last year, Councillors agreed a new approach to the introduction of car parking charges across the area that will see a surplus of income split 50/50 with local areas.
At today's (Thursday 6 February) meeting of The Highland Council's new Economy and Infrastructure Committee members had the opportunity to discuss the progress made in implementing the first phase of the off-street car parking policy.
The first phase includes council owned car parks across five council Wards - Wick and East Caithness; North West Sutherland; Tain and Easter Ross; Cromarty Firth; and Badenoch and Strathspey.
Information packs will be issued tomorrow to Community Councils and other statutory and key stakeholders including Emergency Services, Freight Transport/Road Haulage Associations, Business Improvement Districts, Access Panels and relevant local Trusts and Associations.
Chair of the Committee, Cllr Trish Robertson said: "It was good to have the chance to review progress made to date with the first phase of the roll-out. The next stage is all about gaining feedback from Community Councils and other stakeholders to help inform the next step in the statutory process. The packs being issued to phase 1 stakeholders tomorrow are very clear and provide detailed information and a questionnaire. I encourage input from stakeholders at this stage as their local insight will assist the team to review and, where appropriate, amend proposals before going to a wider public consultation.
"The public have told us they would like the council to look at income generation opportunities rather than reducing services. Members have already agreed that the surplus money generated from the introduction of off-street car parking charges will be split equally between local areas and services. This will allow for councillors to target priorities within their community such as improving infrastructure and investing in facilities."
The Highland Council has launched a free helpline to give assistance and to collect details of individuals and community groups looking to provide volunteering support during Covid19. The single line number - 0300 303 1362 - will connect callers to relevant Council specialist teams and will operate Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm.
Highland Council will be providing e-vouchers to families to support access to free school meals from week commencing 30 March 2020. This innovative and easy-to-use service will ensure over 4,000 school children will continue to receive support for school meals while schools are closed.
The Council has been working at pace to set up centres for the children of key workers. Anyone who has applied for a place at one of the key worker hubs in the Highland Council area will be contacted by the end of today (Wednesday 25th) with confirmation of the arrangements that have been put in place.
THE HELPLINE GOES LIVE TODAY FROM 2:00pm ONWARDS. The Highland Council has launched a free helpline to give assistance and to collect details of individuals and community groups looking to provide volunteering support during Covid19.
Due to the COVID19 restrictions and the closure of Council Service Points, there has been a change in the way Highland Council provides its Homeless services. If you become Homeless, please contact the Council's Service Centre on 01349 886602 (during office hours) and 01349 886691 (out of hours) for further help and support.
As a landlord, the Council's priority is maintaining the welfare of our tenants and providing you with essential services at this difficult time. The situation is changing daily, but this bulletin contains the most up-to-date information about where you can seek advice if you have any concerns about your wellbeing, income or other tenancy matters.
The Highland Council today launched on behalf of the Scottish Government, the COVID-19 business grant scheme. Grants of £10,000 and £25,000 are available for eligible businesses.
In light of the UK and Scottish Government's decision tonight to begin a three-week lockdown in order to delay the spread of the Coronavirus, the Highland Council has taken the decision to cancel the provision of school meals tomorrow Tuesday 24th March. The current format of provision would involve staff and children gathering at school premises and this would go against national advice and directives.
The Highland Council is offering its 9,500 staff and their family members, a new, free and confidential Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) service. The local authority has partnered up with an organisation called Spectrum.Life to provide staff with free mental wellbeing support, fitness plans, legal assistance, financial advice, and eLearning content related to a variety of wellbeing topics.
The Highland Council is preparing to launch dedicated Freephone helplines from tomorrow. One will focus on providing advice and support for people who want to know how they can volunteer and for anyone needing assistance and help.
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