Aberdeen City Council is considering whether to break the SNP’s council tax freeze, the city’s finance chief has revealed.
Moray Council has become the first local authority in Scotland to indicate it intends to increase council tax following a nine-year freeze.
The local authority’s ruling administration group said that raising council tax was essential if frontline services to the public were to be protected.
Now, Aberdeen City Council finance convener Willie Young has confirmed the city can’t rule out following suit.
Cllr Young said: “Our officers are considering all available avenues – every single one – and will put forward recommendations.
“We have to put forward council tax increases as an option.
“But it’s not for me to decide as any increase in council tax would be a matter for full council to determine next month.”
Aberdeen Donside MSP Mark McDonald had written to Labour council leader Jenny Laing asking her to guarantee council tax would remain frozen.
He said: “The council tax freeze has protected squeezed family budgets over the last eight years during the toughest economic times in living memory and Aberdeen residents are among those who have received the greatest benefit from it, a saving of over £1,250.”
But Cllr Young said Mr McDonald’s party held power over the city’s purse strings.
He said: “If Mark McDonald really wanted to help the citizens of Aberdeen he would ask Finance Minister John Swinney to increase our funding.”
Meanwhile, Aberdeenshire Council co-leader Martin Kitts-Hayes said: “We have no plans to raise council tax, irrespective of what Moray Council does.”
An Angus council spokesman said officers were still considering the impact of the Scottish Government’s budget announcements.
He said: “It’s clear we will have a tighter budget than anticipated – but there are no specifics as yet on how we will tackle that in terms of developing our already established programme of savings and efficiencies.”