Over a period of 10 weeks we asked the public about their views on the proposed budget savings for 2014/15. We put forward almost 30 ideas how to generate savings, followed by a number of detailed savings options proposed by Council officers.
Overall, nearly half a thousand responses were submitted from individuals as well as various groups and organisations.
The budget consultation attracted a mixed reaction from the public. While some proposals were generally welcomed, others faced harsh criticism and disapproval.
For example, 63% of respondents supported the proposal to stop funding to voluntary organisations, who cannot demonstrate alignment with local priorities. On the other hand 46% of respondents were against the proposal to charge for car parking in Alloa Town Centre.
Following publication of detailed officer savings proposals, a number of people expressed their disapproval regarding proposals to reduce the number of learning assistants, an increase in music tuition fees and changes to school transport between Tillicoultry and Alva.
When setting the Budget for 2014/15, we took all respondents’ views into account and we have made a number of budget saving decisions including (but are not exhaustive to):
- Music tuition fees will remain at 2013 prices,
- Parking charges will not be introduced,
- School transport will continue to be provided between Tillicoultry and Alva,
- No increase in council tax as it would mean a loss of around £1m-worth of government grants,
- Eight learning assistant posts will be removed and remaining staff will be allocated according to areas of priority need,
- Following a review of voluntary organisations, we will cease funding a number of organisations in October.
Details of all budget decisions made can be accessed via the link below: