Before the Scottish Borders Council's budget was passed, the Borders Conservative group presented it's own alternative budget.
In the budget, the party outlined plans to save £11 million, including an end to the no-compulsory redundancy policy and a cut-back on early-retirement pay-offs.
The Scottish Borders Council's budget was approved by 20 votes to 10.
The leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council, Ivor Hyslop, has invited the Theatre Royal in Dumfries to discuss potential funding of £450,000, to help redevelop the historic property.
The invitation comes after the council approved the budget for the next financial year.
Dumfries and Galloway Council has agreed on the budget for the coming financial year.
The proposals, which were backed by Independent Councillors, include:
- Investment in roads infrastructure and small business support
- Expansion of the Council's graduate and apprenticeship schemes
- Increase the Living Wage to £7.50 an hour
- Avoid compulsory redundancies
The council say additional money allocated in today's budget takes the amount of funding allocated to addressing Welfare Reform to £1.6 million.
A number of measures were proposed and approved in December 2012 by the Scottish Borders Council in a bid to reduce a £3.8 million funding gap in 2013/14.
These measures included:
- A review of the Social Emotional and Behavioural Need Service (SEBN)
- A review of social work business support services delivery model; all Social Care & Health Specialist Support Services and Social Work night-time support service
- A review of the SB Wardens Service with the proposal to cease theservice by 2014/15
- A review of Early Years delivery model as part of the implementation of the '600 hours' pre-school care and education package as part of the Children's Bill
The council have said that a number of further savings have now been agreed.
- Changes to terms and conditions for staf
- The development of an integrated waste strategy
- A review of the school estate
- Further integration of children’s services
Highlights of the 10 year capital budget plans include:
- £51m Investment in roads, lighting and bridges - including£5m to upgrade street lighting with modern energy efficient lamps
- Flood protection schemes - £10.4m including Galashiels and the Skip Running Burn in Jedburgh.
- Waste management - £5.9m
- New Kelso High School - £18.5m
- Improved sports facilities at Peebles High School - £4.3m
- New synthetic sports pitch in Selkirk - £0.9m in 2015/16
- Investment of £8.4m in broadband
- £3.6m to be invested in social work property
- £0.05m per annum to be invested in play facilities across the Borders
- £3.2m, largely funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, to redevelop Wilton Lodge Park in Hawick
- £4.4m for new computers in schools
- £0.05m to help prevent falls in older people's homes.
The Scottish Borders Council (SBC) has approved the 2013/14 budget plans.
They say that their members worked closely with staff in order to protect front line services and deliver value for money for Borders residents.
Highlights of the budget revenue plans include:
- No council tax increase in 2013/14, which will be frozen at 2007/08 levels for the sixth successive year
- No compulsory redundancies
- A living wage of £7.50 for the lowest paid staff from April 2013
- Maintaining the numbers of teachers employed by SBC in 2013/14
- Provision of £6.5m to fund a range of inflationary and service cost pressures
- An extra £1.4m budget per annum to address social work pressures in home care, learning disabilities and residential care
- An extra £6.26m to meet demographic pressures from the increasing number of elderly people and increasing number of vulnerable children
In the past three years Dumfries and Galloway council have reduced spending by almost £30 million.
They now need to save a further £27 million over the next three years, which is a saving of nearly £25,000 a day.
The council say that their immediate task is to save £7.2 million over the coming financial year.
The Scottish Borders Council have £250 million to spend over the next five years, and a further £191 million to spend on capital projects such as roads and schools over the next 10 years.
However, they have to save nearly £4 million over the coming financial year.
They say they will manage this without introducing compulsory redundancies, but say there will be changes to staff terms and conditions, including pay increases and bonuses.
Scottish Borders Council has outlined how it plans to save 3.8 million pounds over the next year.
Budget proposals have also been revealed for the next 10 years.
The local authority have again made assurances that there will be no compulsory redundancies, but they have changed terms and conditions for council workers.
Watch the full report from Jenny Longden below.