Moray Council outlines £51m capital investment as it sets 2022-23 budget

Moray Council has committed to £51 million capital investment in the region in the coming financial year, alongside its £247m revenue budget.

Moray Council outlines £51m capital investment as it sets 2022-23 budget

Around £12m is to be invested in progressing projects within the Moray Growth Deal as part of Moray Council’s economic development portfolio, and £1.25m on expanding the council’s in-demand industrial estate provision.

Over £6m has been allocated for road improvements, including £1.2m to remedy the landslip on the A95 by the River Isla. Work to expand cemetery provision in Elgin has been budgeted at £1.7m, and £200k and £135k is to be spent on upgrading parks and play equipment respectively.

A total of £0.5m is set to be spent on climate change actions, with a further £250k on low-carbon fleet. Around £4.6m is to be spent repairing bridges, with £3.7m of that earmarked for the second phase of the major refurbishment of the Craigellachie Bridge.

Preliminary work for the new Findrassie Primary School has £5m allocated; other schools will see £3m investment to improve their condition and suitability, with an additional £1m budgeted for astroturf pitch construction and upgrades. Gollachy recycling centre will receive £225k improvement works, with £800k set aside for the purchase of land for a replacement household waste and recycling site in Elgin, as Chanonry is not suitable long-term given the growing population.

Councillors agreed to increase Council Tax by 3%, meaning a Band D property will cost residents £1,363 per year, marginally above the 2021/22 Scottish average of £1,308. Together with Scottish Government funding totalling around £181m, Council Tax accounts for a significant portion of the council’s income, at circa £47m. Staff in the council’s taxation team are currently working to apply the Scottish Government’s £150 rebate to Council Tax accounts for properties in Bands A – D, and the for bills of other qualifying groups. It is anticipated that this reduction will be applied to the Council Tax bills which are issued to households in March 2022.

Moray Council used its Covid-related reserves to help balance the budget, and agreed £1.6m of savings for 2022/23. The authority has made savings totalling £56m since 2010/11, however forecasts show next year the council will need to find almost £13m in savings to balance its budget, and almost £7m the year after.

Leader of Moray Council, Cllr Graham Leadbitter, said: “Balancing a budget as large and complex as this is never a straightforward task, and we are seeing the reality of the rising cost in inflation on the goods and services we procure.

“As a council we are continuing to respond to the rapidly changing face of Covid-19 and the impact that has on our communities.

“Right across our services our staff and management teams at all levels continue to go above and beyond, demonstrating an unremitting commitment to the delivery of public services that are hugely valued by individuals, families and communities across Moray and by all of us. I thank all staff for their continued efforts in the face of budget pressures.

“Nevertheless, we’ve committed to ambitious capital investment of £51.4m in the coming year, including £5m for Findrassie Primary School; £3m investment in other schools; £4.7m in bridge improvements; further funding for roads, waste management, harbours and coastal protection and over £13m in economic development.”

Share icon
Share this article: