THE largest trade union at Clackmannanshire Council is calling on the Scottish Government to review how smaller authorities are funded.

Comments from Unison were issued in the wake of an Audit Scotland report into the acute financial position of the local authority and a “wake up call” from spending watchdog the Accounts Commission.

Hard pressed staff at the council, the biggest employer in the area, are working their hearts and souls out to keep services afloat with less and less resources, explained Pam Robertson, Unison secretary in Clackmannanshire.

She told the Advertiser: “The Scottish Government must step in to review how smaller councils are funded.

“Audit Scotland’s report suggests Clackmannanshire Council’s must cut a quarter of its operational budget.

“These cuts will decimate libraries, classroom assistants, school music tuition and care in the community.

“Council staff are threatened with cuts in pay, working hours, and pensions. Staff have already voluntarily given up an hour of their working week to help deal with the budget deficit.

“Clackmannanshire Council must cut unnecessary projects and the use of expensive external consultants and stop attacking the terms and conditions of hard working staff who are doing their best to provide our services with fewer and fewer colleagues.

“Unison are willing to discuss how they can help but we will not tolerate compulsory redundancies.”

As previously reported, this year's budget will be set against a backdrop of unprecedented financial pressures, and the situation is not expected to improve in the near future.

It is expected more and more people will rely on the council's services while funding is unlikely to increase.

In the upcoming budget, the smallest mainland local authority will have to make savings worth around £10million against an income of around £118m.

The cumulative funding gap for the next three years is estimated to be £29million.