Cross-party talks are scheduled to continue later this month over cuts to Aberdeen City Council’s budget.
Discussions were held between party leaders at the Town House yesterday, after claims the latest budget settlement from Scottish Government puts the future of the city’s finances “in jeopardy”.
Group leaders agreed they will meet again later in the month, once they have received budget papers from their own council staff indicating where savings might be made.
Aberdeen City Council co-leader Douglas Lumsden said: “It was a useful meeting and we have agreed to reconvene once we have the budget packs from council officers to see if there is anything we can work on in the budget.”
Mr Lumsden, who is also the council’s finance boss, said they have not ruled out writing to Finance Secretary Derek Mackay but added they would “just have to see what comes”.
The city has been given general revenue funding, to be spent on public services, of only £249 per head, while the Scottish average is £1,193 per person.
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The funding has fallen to £57.038 million for 2019-20, a reduction of £59.503m on the £117.541m the council received in 2016-17.
But Public Finance Minister Kate Forbes maintained it is “misleading” to quote general revenue grant funding as the city will also receive money from business rates.
She said the local authority will receive a total of £372.6m in funding from Scottish Government in 2019-20, adding that with the potential to increase council tax by 3%, this will mean an extra £15.9m more than in 2018-19 to support services.
Liberal Democrat group leader Ian Yuill, said: “It was a useful meeting and we have agreed to meet again.”
SNP group leader Stephen Flynn also attended the meeting, stating it was worthwhile.