Social care bosses have not ruled out controversially axing Christmas gifts for care home residents.
Aberdeenshire Council was branded “Scrooge-like” when the proposals first emerged last month.
The authority’s communities committee met to discuss the plans, which could mean scrapping funding for council-run care homes to pay for gifts.
Currently they spend £32.81 for each resident and £9,613 in total. Other options are to continue with the practice or reduce the funding.
The committee approved a consultation exercise which will be carried out with residents and their families on whether the presents should continue.
Following this, the Aberdeenshire Health and Social Care Partnership will make a decision.
Age Scotland previously said the council’s proposals could heap unnecessary misery on older people.
Director Keith Robson said: “We understand budgets are tight, but scrapping Christmas gifts for care home residents seems a bit Scrooge-like. For those who don’t have close family, this may be the only gift they receive.”