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3% Council Tax Rise.


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They should have gone the tunnel route on Bressay, Yell-Unst and Whalsay when they had the chance.

In the 80s/90s/early 00s when the SIC had colossal sums at its disposal perhaps. We live in a different time now sadly, under the current system anyway.

 

 

Is there not funding available through Holyrood or Wastemonster? The Scottish government funded the Queensferry Crossing.

Edited by George.
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They should have gone the tunnel route on Bressay, Yell-Unst and Whalsay when they had the chance.

In the 80s/90s/early 00s when the SIC had colossal sums at its disposal perhaps. We live in a different time now sadly, under the current system anyway.

 

 

Is there not funding available through Holyrood or Wastemonster? The Scottish government funded the Queensferry Crossing.

 

We are struggling to get Holyrood to fund our current ferry service (as they promised in 2014) let alone provide funding for anything else!

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You are all forgetting something here. Regardless of inefficiencies in the Council (perceived or otherwise) we are facing very real and immediate cost pressures which we cannot escape from.

 

Obvious examples being the lift on the public sector pay freeze, inflation, rising cost of fuel and maintenance for ferries, additional obligation to provide early years childcare. 

 

Council tax will provide in the region of £10M out of a £100M plus budget. Shetlands Council Tax is the 4th lowest in the country (IIRC). 

 

I am not saying the Council is run perfectly but I for one do not mind paying an extra 3% on my Council Tax if it means we can avoid making service cuts to schools, ferries, gritters - whatever. 

 

The crux of the problem is, and has always been, the SIC does not receive nearly enough from central government to fund the services which Shetlanders need and have become accustomed to. Ferries and "per pupil" education funding being prime examples. 

 

No argument that we've always been short changed from South, every since South got here - Greedy ministers an siddy mael....... Nor is there any that the price of the SNP's short term vote getting 'CT Freeze' has a longer term cost, which we're very likely getting very close to being made to pay.

 

Increases are inevitable to cover inflation alone if nothing else, and I can't imagine anybody wants to see essential services cut, but it would be encouraging to see some trimming back of the excesses and un-necessaries to keep any increases minimised. The previous Council's idea of trimming back involved either chopping down the whole tree, or leaving it entirely alone.....thinning out the dead wood and removing the un-necessary baggage hanging on each one might be a more palatable approach. Likewise, it doesn't garner sympathy and understanding when you see basic services virtually everybody benefits from most days being pared to the bone, yet there's people still pulling down £30-40k for positions that are presiding over 'fun and games'.

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They should have gone the tunnel route on Bressay, Yell-Unst and Whalsay when they had the chance.

 

In the 80s/90s/early 00s when the SIC had colossal sums at its disposal perhaps. We live in a different time now sadly, under the current system anyway.

Is there not funding available through Holyrood or Wastemonster? The Scottish government funded the Queensferry Crossing.

We are struggling to get Holyrood to fund our current ferry service (as they promised in 2014) let alone provide funding for anything else!
Why didn't Tavish Scott do it when he was actually in government @ Holyrood and in charge of things like ferries, bridges and tunnels as the Minister for Transport? Edited by Capeesh
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get some funding

From where?

 

 

The Scottish government funded the Skye bridge. The bridges that are needed here are much more use as there are about three times more people living here, a much larger fishing industry, and an oil industry that Skye doesn't have. Would be good if Holyrood financed the necessary here.

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get some funding

From where?

The Scottish government funded the Skye bridge. The bridges that are needed here are much more use as there are about three times more people living here, a much larger fishing industry, and an oil industry that Skye doesn't have. Would be good if Holyrood financed the necessary here.

It would indeed. But considering the council can’t get them to commit to capital funding for new/replacement ferries I’d be very doubtful of their willingness to pay out the £millions more needed for fixed links - just now at least.

 

Even if they did - and despite any case we make as to why we’d be any more deserving of fixed links than any other island - I’d doubt they’d see it that way. And that’s excluding the wish list of other road/rail projects everywhere else that’d have to be funded from the same pot.

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get some funding

From where?

The Scottish government funded the Skye bridge. The bridges that are needed here are much more use as there are about three times more people living here, a much larger fishing industry, and an oil industry that Skye doesn't have. Would be good if Holyrood financed the necessary here.

It would indeed. But considering the council can’t get them to commit to capital funding for new/replacement ferries I’d be very doubtful of their willingness to pay out the £millions more needed for fixed links - just now at least.

 

Even if they did - and despite any case we make as to why we’d be any more deserving of fixed links than any other island - I’d doubt they’d see it that way. And that’s excluding the wish list of other road/rail projects everywhere else that’d have to be funded from the same pot.

 

 

That doesn't say too much for the council. Regardless, it leaves two options. Either fight for funding to provide the bridges and tunnels - or go it alone and look after ourselves. I know which option I would choose.

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get some funding

From where?

 

 

The Scottish government funded the Skye bridge. The bridges that are needed here are much more use as there are about three times more people living here, a much larger fishing industry, and an oil industry that Skye doesn't have. Would be good if Holyrood financed the necessary here.

 

 

Not that simple George. The Whalsay ferry transported 85730 vehicles last year. From Wikipedia I see the Skye ferries were transporting 300,000 vehicles a year in 1971 before the bridge was called for. 

 

I do not doubt that tunnels would be a valid long term option but finding the money and the political will, nationally, to get them started has proven very difficult. Especially when now successive Councils have had to fight tooth and nail just to get the money required to avoid huge cuts to our ageing but vital ferry service.

 

IF we can receive a revenue and capital commitment from Holyrood then perhaps the discussion about fixed links can be revisited. However I suspect that may end up being too late for some services given their poor state of repair. 

Edited by whalsa
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