Council leaders in the north-east have warned they will reach a point when providing certain services becomes “unsustainable”.
It comes as a report published today reveals councils across Scotland need to think differently about how they provide services against a backdrop of increasing demand on services.
The Local Government Overview 2019 by the Accounts Commission, the local authority watchdog, says some services are showing signs of pressure and change is needed to tackle a growing gap between demand and resources.
Jenny Laing, co-leader of Aberdeen City Council, said: “The Accounts Commission’s findings underline what this administration has been communicating, that our city is under pressure because of the Scottish Government’s continuing inability to fund Aberdeen City Council to meet the growing demand for services.”
However the SNP group’s resources spokesman Alex Nicoll said: “What we need to see is money spent on the services that people value, not thrown away on overspends and vanity projects.”
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Meanwhile, the leader of the neighbouring local authority backed Ms Laing’s claims.
Jim Gifford, leader of Aberdeenshire Council, which faced making cuts of around £22 million last month at its annual budget meeting, said: “We have been looking at alternative service delivery for as long as I have been a councillor.
“We need to do more with less and that has been exacerbated over the last seven to eight years.
“Continuous change has become the order of the day and it’s become more challenging as to how we deliver services.
“There will come the point where we say we can’t afford to do this any more. Some things will be unsustainable.”
A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “We recognise there are challenges but we have continued to treat local government fairly.
“We welcome the report’s findings that local authority performance is largely improving or being maintained.”