Aberdeen council bosses face having to make cuts of up to £45 million this year, the Evening Express can reveal today.
Leading councillor Marie Boulton admitted the council’s position for the coming financial year is far worse than previously feared.
And she warned the savings required to balance the budget could come from “absolutely everything”.
The grim outlook comes after the Scottish Government’s general revenue funding, which has to be spent on public services, fell to £57.038 million for 2019-20, a reduction of £59.503m on the £117.541m the authority received in 2016-17.
Ms Boulton, who revealed the numbers at a meeting of the Cults, Bieldside and Milltimber Community Council, said spending would need to be slashed as a result. She said: “As a council we have some challenges coming our way in terms of budgets and we are probably going to have to save more than double the amount we thought we were.
“We are looking at having to save nearly £45m over the next year and that is going to present us with significant challenges.
“I spent last weekend going through all the things we are required to do.
“Some of the money we do have at our disposal has also been ring-fenced for specific purposes, so we can’t even plan for spending it ourselves.”
However, she insisted the local authority will do all it can to minimise the effect on service users.
“We will endeavour to protect services as much as we possibly can,” she said.
“But absolutely everything is being looked at and we are looking at ways we can limit the potential impact on service users. Cuts put us under a significant amount of pressure.”
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A Scottish Government spokeswoman said: “We continue to ensure our partners in local government receive a fair funding settlement despite further cuts to the Scottish Budget from the UK Government.
“We are delivering a funding package of £11.1 billion for local authorities next year – a real terms increase of over £210m for essential public services in Scotland.
“Aberdeen City Council will receive £372.6m to fund local services in 2019-20. Using their council tax powers could also generate an additional £3.7m to support the delivery of essential local services, meaning an extra £15.9 million or 4.4% next year.”