Attention turns to housing budget

Councillor Brian Goodall
Councillor Brian Goodall

THEY say forewarned is forearmed and Fife Council has continued that mantra with yet more service budget savings promised.

Following on from previous promised reviews of its education and transport costings, the authority has now issued a statement saying there are “tough challenges” ahead for its housing budget.

The council’s allocations policy has been reviewed and priority homeless households won’t be offered as many properties as in the past, while the authority is currently also in discussions with tenants on its future rent charges.

Councillor Brian Goodall, chair of the housing and communities committee: said: “The council’s rent levels remain amongst the lowest in Scotland but it is important that we hear from tenants about what they want to pay, and the services they want to receive, so I would encourage all tenants to complete their questionnaire and return it to housing and neighbourhood services.

”By finding efficient and innovative ways of working, taking tough decisions where needed, and continuing to work with tenants, the council will be prepared and ready to meet the challenges faced and save around £7 million by 2015 whilst continuing to improve access to housing in Fife in the future.”

However, it has also pointed to significant investments made this year, including £15 million to see the completion of more new council houses across the county and improving the standard of its existing homes, investing in a £63.13 million programme.

With its budget in February, the council’s warning it remains keen to “make the most of every penny” it has.