EAST Lothian Council has presented the following six suggestions in a document titled 'Budget Saving Options – Some Hard Choices':

  1. Rationalise and review council assets: The council has a wide asset base with a presence across many of our towns and villages. We are continuing to review our assets and how they are used and managed, as well as the office provision for our staff. The council currently spends over £10m per annum in running costs associated with staff and schools, as well as significant additional costs relating to community based assets. The savings proposal could review how we are currently utilising the assets which we have available or indeed rationalise our wider asset base – saving/income £200,000-plus.
  2. Review the delivery of the garden waste collection service: The council currently uplifts all household garden waste. Many councils have now ceased to provide this service as there is no statutory requirement. The council could look at the following options: 2a: The council could reduce the frequency of uplifting garden waste to a monthly collection – saving/income £110,000; 2b: The council could charge for providing the household garden waste service – saving/income £346,000.
  3. Grant support to local business: The council currently provides match funding to businesses who are looking to invest in business growth to support the creation of jobs. The council could look at alternative options to support these business, including the promotion of loan arrangements – saving/income £80,000.
  4. Commercialisation of outdoor learning: Currently the council operates a number of outdoor learning and education centres. The current provision of these centres could be reviewed to maximise commercial income opportunities – saving/income £20,000-plus.
  5. Removal of taxi card scheme: The council currently provides discounted taxi fares to those who currently meet specific criteria. This is discretionary and could be reviewed – saving/income £35,000.
  6. Introduce charging for uplifts for disposal of bulky items: The council could introduce charging for the disposal of large bulky uplifts, similar to the vast proportion of other councils. Currently this service is provided free of charge – saving/income £90,000.