Published: 10/04/2018 09:58 - Updated: 10/04/2018 10:06

Portknockie landslips - cost of clearing up to be debated

Donald GattREPAIRS to areas of Portknockie following a series of landslips during the flooding of last September will be debated by Moray Council on Wednesday.

The village was hit by a total of 22 different landslides as mud and rubble cascaded down slopes, leaving several homes at risk.

The cost of doing all the repair work needed in Portknockie has been identified as being as high as £2million by the council’s own officers.

Speaking ahead of tomorrow’s meeting cllr Donald Gatt (Keith and Cullen, Conservative) stated that some areas deemed at a ‘low risk’ of further landslips should be left alone so that the work is concentrated where it is most needed.

He said: "The landslips are in some areas threatening the stability of property and infrastructure. Portknockie has waited too long for repairs to be carried out.

"I will canvas my fellow councillors to ensure work is done at the earliest opportunity to safeguard in particular Harbour Road, the harbour access track and Patrol Road.

"This will ensure that Portknockie harbour can continue well into the future."

The cost of the option favoured by cllr Gatt has been estimated at £1,745,000.

However he warned that even spending this reduced sum would have implications.

Cllr Gatt added: "The cost of approximately £1,745,000 is exactly why the Moray Council should be prudent with taxpayer’s money, for these unforeseen circumstances.

"If approved it will incur additional loan charges of £100,000 per year.

"Audit Scotland classes both Moray Council’s revenue budget and its capital budget as unsustainable.

"Therefore the council will face even more difficult choices in the coming year to bring both budgets onto a sustainable footing."

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