Dundee City Council has agreed the SNP's proposals to make £10.3m of savings to its budget.
The council voted for a budget that includes:
· A 3% increase to council tax
· Selling Dundee House to the Tayside Pension Fund, before leasing it back.
· An annual charge of £35-per-household to have brown bins emptied.
· School meals increasing by 5p day
· School breakfast clubs to charge £2 a day, per pupil
· Voluntary redundancies offered, including in schools and nurseries.
· Changes to parking fees, to try and raise at least £317,000
· Reorganisation of staffing structures to try and save £2m.
21/02/19 Reverse order Timestamp format
City Chambers is filling up as councillors prepare to thrash out the Dundee City Council budget for 2019-20
The public gallery is full, with some even standing.
The Labour group's alternative budget proposes:
Halting cuts to education
Stopping proposed changes to council workers' terms and conditions
Putting money back into the third sector services
Freezing charges in schools (school meals, lessons)
Creating a Caring Dundee Fund to support social care
The Labour group plans to do this by:
Maintaining council reserves at £5m rather than rising them to £7m
Rising council tax by 4.7% rather than the proposed 3%
Removing the second civic car
Removing the funding for Police Scotland activities which "should be funded from their £1.2bn annual budget"
Dundee Labour's Kevin Keenan said "This is a truly dreadful SNP budget from a party that has let Dundee down again..."
The Lib Dem group proposes to remove proposed increases in school meal charges
The Lib Dems also propose to remove increases in parking charges in certain streets in Broughty Ferry, the Hilltown and elsewhere
Council leader John Alexander says one-off savings don't help long-term and simply "Kick the can down the road".
Derek Scott of the Lib Dems claims the administration made changes to its budget without letting the other parties see them.
Councillor Willie Sawyers says amendments being made is common practice
Children and education director Paul Clancy says any reduction in staff will have an effect on children at city schools, following a query from Labour's Kevin Keenan. Mr Clancy added that children will, however, receive the same number of hours of schooling
Lib Dem group leader Fraser Macpherson said there has been "Zero consultation with west end parking group" regarding changes to parking in the area
Fraser Macpherson said, re: parking charges: "I despair at the lack of consultations....utterly dreadful"
Labour's Michael Marra says this is the "Worst budget in living memory"
SNP's Alan Ross says The Labour group wishes to withdraw £50,000 of budget to Police Scotland, and asks impact will this have on community safety
Labour's Richard McCready: "Can we not suspend this meeting for three weeks for negotiations" relating to council workers' terms and conditions and speaking to trade unions over the coming weeks
Cheers from the public gallery as Labour's Richard McCready fights the cause of council workers and proposed changes to their terms and conditions
Stuart Fairweather branch chairman of the Unite union "We think the budget proposals should be rejected and DCC should establish a 'no cuts' budget"
"Dundee faces a dire situation" says union chairman Stuart Fairweather
"We came to a meeting on Monday and we were slapped in the face with the threat of compulsary redundancies" - Unite union's Stewart Fairweather
Stuart Fairweather: "Local democracy is under threat in the same way industrial democracy is under threat"
Labour's Kevin Keenan asks if council workers were made aware they would lose their jobs in an unprofessional manner re: treatment by council officers
Stuart Fairweather tells the meeting workers were called at 11am last Monday and told about meetings to be held at 1pm about the fate of their jobs
Stuart Fairweather says that at those meetings, people felt they were under the threat of losing their jobs "there and then". Discussions with Kick It Kick Off were held while kids were in the corridors. Chants of "disgusting" from the public gallery
SNP councillor Ken Lynn claims the council has "knocked on every door" to try and get extra funding from the Scottish Goverment
Stuart Fairweather says that postponing the Budget meeting would be preferable to "inflicting millions more of cuts on the hardest hit communities of Dundee"
SNP councilor Alan Ross says to Stuart Fairweather: "I agree that this can't continue.... what do you think the answer should be?"
Stuart Fairweather says the action to be taken is to reject the cuts then enter discussion with Holyrood....or suggests councillors should resign.
Trade unionist Raymond Mennie of the Dundee Communist Party warns the council will face "Wide ranging industrial disputes" over the budget proposals
Raymond Mennie mentions the V&A and how there are job losses regardless of there being a "brand new museum" in the city
Raymond Mennie leads chants of "Shame, shame, shame on you!" as he points at the administration councillors.
David Baxter from the EIS teachers' union says there is a "deep concern" among its members regarding the budget
David Baxter says two-thirds of EIS members have signed a letter opposing the council's proposals, in the space of 48 hours
Michael Marra of Scottish Labour says the documents show the council is "abandoning attempts to close the attainment gap"
Helen Meldrum of the GMB Scotland union says there are more cuts to low-paid, part-time, female roles, and the impact of the budget is "disproportionate" to women and children
Breakfast clubs in the city at just 25p are a "lifeline" says Helen Meldrum
Helen Meldrum to council leader John Alexander: "You say you've tried your best, John, but your best isn't good enough", and urges him to ask Finance Minister Derek Mackay for more money
Ken Lynn asks if Helen Meldrum feels he, as an SNP councillor, "has no conscience"?
She replies that if the budget goes through, then she believes he doesn't.
Jim Macfarlane of the Unison union says some members were told there could be cuts to staffing levels, in meetings lasting just seven minutes
Council leader John Alexander thanks opposition members for submitting their proposals ahead of today's meeting
John Alexander says he and his fellow councillors "care about every single person in this city"
Councillor Alexander says there are significant challenges in all councils in Scotland and that the political make-up of local authorities doesn't change the challenges they face
Councillor Alexander says the administration's Budget is "the most sensible and pragmatic way forward"
Councillor Alexander notes that 70% of the council's £366m budget goes to children and familes services and the IJB
Lib Dem group leader Fraser Macpherson says that "however you look at it there are bad things in everyone's budget" and he "doesn't have a magical solution"
Fraser Macpherson says he "knows and likes" every member of the council and knows they "all have decency in their hearts"
Fraser Macpherson says "There are cuts in (the budget) and nobody wants that" and that "there has been a lack of priority in local government" from Holyrood and Westminster
Labour group leader Kevin Keenan says Labour cannot support the Lib Dem group's budget, as it "doesn't go far enough"
Kevin Keenan says he wrote to Finance Secretary Derek Mackay asking for more money for the city council
SNP councillor Kevin Cordell claims despite the drop in local governemtn spending in Scotland, the situation is worse in England and Wales
Lord Provost Ian Borthwick thanks Baillie Fraser Macpherson and council leader John Alexander for the "conciliatory and constructive tone" in their speeches
Labour's Kevin Keenan makes an impassioned plea directly to Lord Provost Ian Borthwick, "as an independent, Labour councillor" to support the Labour amendment. (Mr Borthwick was formerly a Labour councillor)
Council leader John Alexander says the proposed 4.7% council tax rise that the Labour group has tabled "would not be welcomed" among constituents he has spoken to