Council considers reducing working week

The Highland Council is contemplating a proposal to reduce its working week to four and a half days.

If approved, the proposal would result in the Council closing at Friday lunchtime. Staff would then have the option to work their existing contracted hours in a shorter time period, or reduce their contracted hours on a voluntary basis. 

The Highland Council currently faces a funding gap of £21 million for 2016-17 and believes the move would generate ‘significant’ savings as a result of reduced heat and power usage. 

Councillor Bill Fernie, budget leader, said: “At this stage this is just a proposal, but we think it is a good idea and one which compares very favourably with some of the other options coming forward, and we will be consulting widely.

“It is our priority to maintain services and jobs in Highland and as such, this is part of a package of proposed measures, with the aim of setting a balanced budget, whilst protecting key services.”