Aberdeen City Council faces £20m funding blackhole over five years

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Shortfall: The Aberdeen City Council faces a £20m funding gap.STV

Aberdeen City Council faces an estimated £20m funding gap over the next five years.

The shortfall is revealed in a budget report which will go before councillors next week.

Although there are no new savings in the proposed budget, it is noted that “expectations and demand for services continue to increase” and that the cost of services over the next five years is expected to rise by 7.6%.

By 2018 the council’s budget will rise to nearly £460m when it is estimated the authority will be spending around £480m a year.

The report states that council officers will work on the “development of a range of options to address the funding gap over the next five years”.

A review of council services will take place to identify ways to plug the shortfall.

The council - which currently has a £430m budget - has already agreed cuts totalling nearly £100m over the next five years.

The local authority – which receives the joint lowest funding per head in Scotland from the Scottish Government – cut £15.6m from its budget in 2011/12, £18,5m in 2012/12 and will cut a further £11.2m in 2013/14.

Officials also state in the report that the council is expected to underspend by £5m for the second year in a row.

This money will be placed in a “risk fund” to guard against potential cost pressures of £5.5m on the proposed budget.

Councillors will meet to discuss the budget on February 14 at the Town House.

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