Angus Council underspent by £7.5 million during 2012/13 councillors heard when the financial performance was revealed last week.
However, it was stressed that the need to maintain the council’s relatively strong financial position is clear, as councillors also considered a report highlighting the stark financial forecast for council finances for the next four years.
Speaking following a meeting of the full Angus Council on Thursday, finance spokesperson councillor Alex King said: “Despite having to meet the extra costs of another heavy winter, services have managed to stay within the tight budgets set for 2012/13.
“This is testament to our committed staff who are responding to the financial challenge of delivering services differently, and often with less.”
Commenting on the underspend, councillor King commented: “The £7.5million underspend figure was boosted in large part by the return of £2.1million of uncommitted reserves from the Tayside Police and Fire boards which were wound up at the end of March.
“We also saved more in costs and gained more in income in some areas than originally expected. This was all anticipated in February when we set the current budget so those resources are already being put to good use in services across Angus.”
Elected members heard that the council’s financial reserves remain healthy at around £28 million.
Contrasting the strong financial position the council is currently in with the outlook for the next few years councillor King continued: “Although our financial results for last year leave us in a strong financial position, wen are projecting that almost £30 million of savings could be needed over the next four years.
“Reductions on this scale will mean big changes to how we provide services. We’ll be doing all we can to deliver more efficiencies and minimise the impact on frontline services.”