Fife Council facing £30m coronavirus bill

Warning of ‘far reaching’ implications for council

Fife Council is staring at a £30m Coronavirus bill - and the impact on its finances could be “far reaching and significant.”

The stark reality of lockdown was given in a report which will go in front of councillors as they meet online for the first time on Thursday.

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The report, from Elaine Muir, director of finance, says the current situation “poses significant financial risk to the council” - and the final cost is not yet known.

The “far reaching” financial implications are being monitored, with the local authority working on a strategy to “reset and re-start” the Kingdom’s economy and network of services as the pandemic is brought under control.

Councillors will be told this week there could be delays to implementing previously agreed savings at a time when it is battling substantial loss of income - everything from car parking revenue to closure of facilities has hit the local authority.

It could also face more problems if levels of payment for Council Tax, non-domestic rates and l rents all drop.

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The report noted: “The full impact on income will not become apparent for a number of months depending on the impact on the wider Fife economy. “

The local authority is also facing claims from construction companies following the closure of sites, which is legally obliged to pay. From the limited number of claims lodged so far,m the impact could be significant.

It has also taken a £10m hit in terms of internal trading activities. The level of work being carried out by building services, transportation and property

And there remain concerns over how its arms length trusts - which run everything from theatres to leisure centres - will cope as its buildings remain closed and all services and events cancelled.


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The council is in contact with the organisations - it has provided help to deal with immediate cash flow issues - , but says any attempt to mitigate losses “will be extremely difficult where the loss of income is significant.

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