Comment posted Opposition evaluations of three year council budget by Bob Chicken.
Andrew. Your fears mirror my own. It is becoming clearer where the ruling group will seek cuts to pay for the sweeties.
Last year we saw the end of the contract with the excellent Neighbourhood Networks take away a pillar of support for many vulnerable adults.
Before 2010 Argyll and Bute had some of the highest Social Care charges in Scotland. In late 2010 a new charging system for Social Care was introduced. The threshold for payments was reduced. This caused many vulnerable adults to have to make substantial contributions to their support for the first time.
Its implementation was delayed because the system was throwing up errors. It was finally brought in last April and one is still hearing reports of problems.
If this cynical treatment of the vulnerable is, even in the smallest part, contributing to the sweeties in the election “Goodie Bag” then they will indeed have a bitter taste.
Dick Walsh’s statement says that they have a £750k fund for “preventative spend”. He tells us that this includes social care but doesn’t offer any detail. Is it 750k per year or is it spread over 3 years? How does this fit in with the Scottish Government’s new initiative to integrate Health and Social care? Is the money in addition to any funds which the Scottish Government will provide? Will it be used to alleviate the cost of social care to those who need it but can ill afford it? Will it be used to extend social care to those who lost out last year?
All political budgets tend to be slanted towards the positive stuff in them but this one is unbelievable, and will remain so until we can see the full figures setting out the detailed 3 year spend.
If it’s anything like last year’s budget then the devil in the detail will only be dragged out, kicking and screaming, well after the May elections.
Recent comments by Bob Chicken
- Argyll and Bute Council: Where are we now?
Graeme-in what way? Does this mean that you are a tad moved by recent events? Or do you consider them to be of ‘brown trouser’ signifigance for all reasonsble SNP supporters out there?
- Argyll and Bute Council: Councillor McCuish leads again
Webcraft – Surely it was direct rule from Holyrood that caused the problem in the first place!
- Loch Fyne Whiskies sold
A great pity that Richard is selling up. He has done a terrific job with Loch Fyne Whiskies and his choice of stock has brought a lot of pleasure to many of us!
- Care Accolade 2013 recognition for Argyll and Bute Council Community Dementia Team
Well done the Dementia Team – thoroughly deserved recognition for all your efforts.
- Campbeltown IS to get the white elephant ferry route
One of the lessons we all learned from the last Ballycastle service is that it’s important to develop the business to business links.
After the service had stopped, and prior to a 2nd attempt to get it going again, a survey was done with businesses on both sides of the North Channel. It was found that, despite a complete lack of encouragement to business trade, many links had been forged and that a surprising number of businesses had started trading on the other side.
It was also found that the short and sporadic seasonal nature of the service discouraged many traders from making any commitments. A number told us that they would be happy to trade across the water if the service ran on an 11 or 12 month basis.
There were also a lot of agricultural ties between the two sides. None of this was exploited by the ferry company. Indeed, one got the impression that they were actually anti-business.
If this service is to prosper there needs to be a concerted effort to make these vital business to business links with the mainland. Perhaps this is a good opportunity for HIE to lend a helping hand (and some serious seedcorn funding) to encourage local businesses to make a start.
Tourism is, of course, important, it provides the the icing for the cake. However it is the day to day trade links that will make this service work and, hopefully expand from the, less than generous, 3 days/week to the 5 to 7 day service that is really needed here in Kintyre.
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