Committee gives go-ahead for future Timber Transport funding opportunities
3rd February 2019
Members of The Highland Council's Environment, Development and Infrastructure Committee have agreed that up to £0.5m go towards the 2019/20 round of Timber Transport schemes that will bring future benefits to communities and rural roads in Highlands.
The money will come from the Council's road structural (capital) fund and be used as match funding for the Strategic Timber Transport Fund (STTF) operated by Forestry Commission Scotland.
Last year the Council was successful in applying for £1,534,600 from STTF and a further £136,000 from Forestry Partners. This, along with £0.5m match funding from its 2018/19 Roads Capital Budget has allowed the Council to implement six schemes and to carry out preparatory work so to be in a position to bring forward bids for 2019/20.
The schemes included improvements to the B873 Altnaharra - Syre route in Sutherland, the Strathconon road in Ross and Cromarty, and the C1223 Sheil Bridge to Glenelg Road - a fragile lifeline route leading to the remote and fragile community of Glenelg.
Members were advised that since today's committee report was written the Highlands have secured an additional £240,000 of STTS grant funding for 2018/19 which the council has added £100,000 of match funding from the capital programme to enable a further £340,000 to be invested in improvements.
The Forestry Commission Scotland has once again contacted local authorities and forestry operators asking them to indicate the level of match funding to support STTS bids that they may have available. Bids are likely to be invited in March or April 2019
Chair of the Committee, Councillor Allan Henderson said: "I certainly commend this scheme as last year half a million from the Council resulted in over £2m worth of improvement work being carried out in areas where there was not much possibility of getting this work done without having the support of the Scheme."
"If Highland Council is once again successful in getting funding in the 2019/20 round of bids the money will be used for more projects to improve rural infrastructure in and reduce the impact of timber haulage on local communities."
Highland Council's Environmental Health team have identified raised levels of naturally occurring algal toxins following routine monitoring in coastal waters at Loch Glencoul, Kylesku area. Eating shellfish such as cockles, mussels, oysters or razor fish from these areas may pose a health risk arising from the consumption of these algal toxins.
Highland Council's Environmental Health team has identified raised levels of naturally occurring algal toxins following routine monitoring in coastal waters at Loch Eishort. Eating shellfish such as mussels, cockles, oysters or razor fish from these areas may pose a health risk arising from the consumption of these algal toxins.
Funding for food and activities during the summer break. More children and young people will benefit from a nutritious meal and a place to play this summer holiday.
At a meeting of The Highland Council on Thursday 27 June 2019, Councillors decided to discontinue the provision of education at Altnaharra Primary School, dividing its catchment area between Tongue Primary, Farr Primary and Lairg Primary schools. A copy of the consultation report, together with the original proposal paper and all relevant appendices can be viewed on the Council's website at: www.highland.gov.uk/schoolconsultations The Council is satisfied that implementation of closure is the most appropriate response to the reasons for formulating the original proposal identified by the authority.
"Highland Council as agreed to allow a question time for members of the public at future Council meetings. The motion was presented by Depute Leader Cllr Alasdair Christie and means that from December 2019, Highland Council meetings will include a time allocation for questions from members of the public.
Highland Councillors have unanimously agreed that the Council will support the continuation of the exemption from UK Air Passenger Duty for flights departing from airports in the Highlands & Islands; and Members also agreed that the Council will continue working with HiTRANS to present the case of the need for, and benefit arising from an exemption from the current UK Air Passenger Duty and any successor duty. The Council's stance comes this week as calls have been made by Aberdeen Airport for greater parity with Highlands & Islands.
Suicide prevention is a key priority for The Highland Council. Members have agreed today, to take forward a piece of research with partners including NHS Highland and Police Scotland, to better understand the current evidence base and experience of suicide in Highland.
The introduction of a service to support the mental health and wellbeing of Highland Council staff and councillors has been approved by the Council as part of a range of measures to improve wellbeing. An Employee Assistance Programme for staff and Members will be put in place to offer telephone and internet-based counselling 24 hours a day.
Councillor Mackie had a written question at today's meeting of Highland council. Item 12 - Question Time To the Chair of the Environment, Development & Infrastructure Committee "Official Highland Council guidance indicates that, unless extended, successful Community Asset Transfer requests should be completed by the Local Authority within a nine months' timeframe.
From highland council Meting today 27 June 2019. Item 12 - Question Time To the Chair of the Corporate Resources Committee "What are the current best estimates for present total Highland Council debt and the annual financial commitment required to service this debt?".
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