05 June 2006
Consultation begins on Infrastructure Services
Staff from the SIC’s Infrastructure Services Department are running a series of drop-in sessions shortly, to ask the public for their help in identifying savings across a number of front-line services – including ferries, road gritting, and street lighting.
With diminishing reserves, increased costs, and poorer returns on investments, the Council’s spending still far outstrips its available resources. Last year, the SIC saved £11.5 million - £2.1 million more than its target – largely as a result of work done by staff on identifying internal efficiencies. Despite that, the Council still operated at a loss of around £100,000 a day.
Councillors decided in February to review over fifty of its services, to try to identify potential savings. Staff from Infrastructure Services are now taking that process out to the public, with 12 drop-in sessions planned right across the isles. People will get the chance to see all the options, comment on how they might be affected, and put forward ideas they might have to mitigate the effects of any future cuts.
Chairman of the Environment and Transport Committee, Allan Wishart, says the potential impact of future savings decisions should not be underestimated: “Councillors must have the best information available, before taking decisions which will have significant impact on people’s lives and livelihoods. I know the whole concept of ‘consultation’ might have a bad reputation for some people – but I can’t emphasise enough the seriousness of the financial situation facing the Council, and the need for the public to get involved in this process. It’s no longer a case of whether or not we make cuts – but where those cuts can be made fairly, and with the least impact.”
The full list of consultations is:
- Symbister Hall - Thursday 14 June, 4pm to 8.30pm
- Mid Yell Hall - Friday 15 June, 4pm to 8pm
- Baltasound Hall - Monday 18 June, 3pm to 8pm
- Tuesday 19th June, Bressay Hall, 4pm-7pm
- Thursday 21st June, Walls Hall, 2pm-7pm
- Friday 22nd June, Fetlar Hall, 4.15pm-7.15pm
- Saturday 23rd June, Lerwick Town Hall, 2.30pm-5pm
- Tuesday 26th June, Cunningsburgh Hall, 2pm-7pm
- Wednesday 27th June, Brae Hall, 2pm-7pm
- Thursday 28th June, Scalloway Hall, 2pm-7pm
- Saturday 30th June, Tingwall Hall, 2pm-5pm
- Wednesday 4th July, Papa Stour, 10.30am-12.30pm
Drop-in dates for Skerries and Fair Isle are still to be arranged.
- Roads Winter Services Review - visit our Winter Driving pages to see current gritter routes.
- Street Lighting Review
- Shetland-wide Ferry Operations
- A summary of the Shetland-wide Ferry Operations
- Feedback form