Falkirk budget deal sees charges frozen

The budget will see a series of charges held at current levels
The budget will see a series of charges held at current levels
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Residents are facing another ‘big freeze’ in the year ahead ... but this time it’s good news.

Council house rents, the cost of meals on wheels, school dinners and many facilities in the district’s leisure centres will be frozen under a budget deal agreed by Falkirk Council.

The £344 million spending plan for the next 12 months approved by a 17-13 vote on Wednesday will also invest in roads, youth employment and the low paid.

At the last minute, after being challenged by the SNP, the Labour-led administration even managed to find another £330,000 to restore free school meals to pupils at Carrongrange School who cannot go home for lunch, invest more in its parks and bring forward sports initiatives for young people.

Council leader Craig Martin claimed: “Despite council revenue funding being slashed by almost 10 per cent in the last three years, this is a budget for growth across the council area in every corner of the community, to create and protect jobs.

However, opposition leader David Alexander said it was a ‘‘cynical’’ attempt to win favour ahead of May’s local government elections.