Lack of affordable housing is forcing families and young people to leave their island and rural communities. It is creating a crisis in workforce availability for those with jobs and those obtaining work locally unable to find places to live.
“We know some people might find the 10% hard when other costs are increasing too, but be assured we’re doing it to help to protect those important Council services that you, your family, your friends and your neighbours, need and rely on”
A unique scheme to Scotland is the Scottish Government’s Council Tax Reduction (CTR). It assesses a household’s income, capital and circumstance. It is open to all, including people not in receipt of benefits.
The number of people receiving the reduction has actually gone down in Scotland since last year which is why it is important to check to see if you are eligible.
James Stockan has called the Scottish Government funding to Orkney ‘the worst in Scotland’.
“The passing of the budget means £82.7 million is coming the way of Orkney Islands Council, an additional £4.5 million on last year’s spending – an increase of 5.7%. The plans will provide the council with an increase in day-to-day revenue spending.”
Councillors decided that £89.4 million (£89,392,500) should be spent on running Council services in 2021 – 2022 and that savings of £476,600 should be found during the year ahead.
“The economic shockwaves of this pandemic have rocked families and households in Orkney, with many thousands facing falling earnings and rising costs.”
Council Tax charges should rise by 4.79%, which would increase the Band D annual charge from £1100 to £1153.
The Council Tax may be set to rise in Orkney by 3% and a loss of over 14 jobs