Dumfries & Galloway Standard - - INTIMATIONS -

Coun­cil chiefs face a “chal­leng­ing” time try­ing to bal­ance the books over the next few years.

“Ruth­less” sav­ings need to be made, ac­cord­ing to a pa­per pre­sented to coun­cil­lors on Tues­day.

As much as £98 mil­lion might need to be cut by 2023, on top of the £86 mil­lion al­ready saved since 2010.

Leader Elaine Mur­ray said “This is a di­rect con­se­quence of a UK Gov­ern­ment pol­icy on aus­ter­ity and not be­cause the coun­cil has been over­spend­ing or cur­rent cap­i­tal projects.”

Fi­nance boss Gil­lian Ross said the best-case sce­nario would see £64 mil­lion hav­ing to be cut from the bud­get over the next five years, with the worst case mean­ing £98 mil­lion.

If the coun­cil tax goes up ev­ery year, the range would be be­tween £49 mil­lion and £89 mil­lion. And the sit­u­a­tion would be made worse if more cap­i­tal projects were in­tro­duced.

Coun­cil­lor Archie Dry­burgh said: “It’ll be chal­leng­ing, no doubt about it.”

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