Council’s budget will reduce by a quarter in five years

Dumfries and Galloway Council
Dumfries and Galloway Council

A local councillor has warned the public to take proposed cuts to the local authority’s budget seriously as it will impact heavily in the region.

Mid Galloway and Wigtown West Councillor Jim McColm told members of Wigtown Community Council this week that the previous practice of cutting back local services with the “bacon slicer philosophy” will be abandoned in favour of closing down services altogether.

Councillor McColm said: “In this climate of austerity, £17 million is to be cut from the budget next year, about five per cent of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s revenue. But, in the next five years, the figure rises to £81m, a quarter of the budget. This may be offset by raising council tax but I feel the public have not got their heads round this. The money the council gets will be dramatically whittled down and some services will have to go completely.”

The councillor also raised the issue of intermittent street lighting in Wigtown which he told the community council was the result of storm damage. Councillor McColm said half of the town had been affected with either no lights at all or lighting going on and off. He said the issue was the lights were on such a large circuit, it was taking a long time for engineers to locate the problem.