Councillors approved a raft of cost-saving measures to be put to Moray residents as part of a budget consultation.
If agreed, the proposals could reduce the council’s budget by just over £6.7 million a year. Cash will still have to taken from the council’s reserves to bridge the estimated £15 million gap in the council’s budget by the end of next year.
Further savings will still have to be found for the following year, 2018-2019. If no action is taken the council could be facing a £23 million gap in its budget at that stage.
Speaking after the meeting, Leader of Moray Council, Cllr George Alexander, urged people to get involved in what he described as an important discussion topic for residents of Moray.
“Moray Council is eager to communicate with the public about the budget proposals being released,” he said.
“I hope what we are putting out will give our communities the opportunity to discuss and put forward their views.
“Unfortunately, due to the financial situation the council faces, savings must be maintained at the level which is being proposed. We are keen to hear alternative options for savings and welcome the input of other fully-funded alternatives to what is being suggested.
“We know that this is not a pleasant announcement to be making at this time of year, but we have to set a balanced budget by 14 February. No proposals will be confirmed until then.
“Any changes in practice will not take effect until the new financial year.”
Information on the proposals will be live on the council’s website and social media on Tuesday morning, and hard copies available at Access Points and libraries shortly afterwards. Inside, as well as proposals, will be details on how people can have their say on the forthcoming budget. Responses have to be received by midnight on January 14.
Details of Scottish council’s grant allocation from the government will be made public on December 14.
Famous for its colony of dolphins, fabulous beaches and more malt whisky distilleries than any where else in Scotland, Moray is a thriving area and a great place to live. Nestling between Aberdeenshire and the Highlands, Moray stretches from Tomintoul in the south to the shores of the Moray Firth, from Keith in the east to Brodie Castle in the west.