Following Aberdeenshire Council’s meeting, which discussed projects being put forward as a result of the £25 million underspend, shadow leader Hamish Vernal said it was important people remembered where the funding had come from.
“These projects are very worthy and each of them in their own way will contribute to their local communities,” said the Aberdeenshire SNP leader. “However, we should not let that obscure the fact that these monies are only available as a result of the previous council administration’s failure to deliver on their planned budget.
“Frontline council services were cut to the tune of £28 million last year, which led to a great deal of anguish and distress amongst the old, the vulnerable and the young as sheltered housing wardens were withdrawn or cut-back, classroom assistants were removed, and a range of services were scaled back.
“To then discover on top of this that the council had an underspend of some £25 million at the end of the financial year was simply horrendous and raised serious questions about the budget monitoring processes in place.”