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WORST FEARS CONFIRMED

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Councils across Scotland are struggling to meet Government spending restrictions and communities throughout the cou...
Councils across Scotland are struggling to meet Government spending restrictions and communities throughout the country face cuts in services and council tax increases in the next financial year.

The grim picture emerged at a meeting of Scottish council leaders in Edinburgh today following which COSLA president Keith Geddes described as confirming his worst fears for local government.

'To say that the picture is grim is understating the case', he commented, 'all our councils reported today that they will have to make cuts and increase council tax to meet the Government's restrictions.'

Councillor Geddes spelt out what that will mean: 'Cuts in services, more job losses - and for the first time we are looking at compulsory redundancies - and increases in council tax in the order of 13 per cent.

'The Scottish secretary, despite all his comments to the contrary, has one again cut local government spending and the only people who suffer as a result of that are the people of Scotland.

'I hope that by Friday, when COSLA meets Mr Forsyth, he will realise the enormity of his financial restrictions on councils and meet us with an open mind to start moving local government forward again,' said councillor Geddes.

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