East Lothian Consultation Hub

Welcome to the East Lothian Consultation Hub. This site will help you find and participate in consultations that interest you. Recently added consultations are displayed below. Alternatively, search for consultations by keyword, postcode, interest etc.

Open Consultations

  • Early Learning and Childcare: August 2024 Intake

    For parents or carers who have received an offer of a nursery place for August 2024. Please respond to confirm the acceptance or refusal of the place. The closing date for responses has been extended until Monday 27 May 2024

    Closes 27 May 2024

  • Family Views - Child Planning Framework -Locality Team

    This is a survey to hear your views on the process of your child being referred through the Child Planning Framework- Locality Team. The Child Planning Framework - Locality Team is a meeting where teachers and organisations come together with your consent to discuss how best to meet your...

    Closes 31 May 2024

  • East Lothian Council Proposed Replacement Article 4 Direction

    East Lothian Council is consulting on a proposed replacement Article 4 Direction under the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development Order) (Scotland) Order 1992, as amended. This affects some very specific classes of development which, subject to approval by...

    Closes 2 June 2024

  • Summer Holiday Attendance 2024

    Please complete this form to let us know if your child will NOT be attending nursery, during part or all of the Summer break by Wednesday 05 June 2024. You should consider this carefully as you may not be able to change sessions after this date. You do not need to complete this if your...

    Closes 5 June 2024

  • ELC (High Street, East Linton) (Disabled Parking Spaces) Order 2024

    East Lothian Council intends to make an Order under Sections 1(1), 2(1) and (2), 3 and Part IV of Schedule 9 of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 to introduce and/or amend enforceable disabled bay restrictions at High Street, East Linton. A copy of the proposed Order, Schedule, plan...

    Closes 9 June 2024

Forthcoming Consultations

  • Supplier Questionnaire for Meet the Buyer 2024

    The purpose of this questionnaire is to reach out to the suppliers and potential suppliers of East Lothian Council, to actively seek feedback which will enable the Procurement Team to identify areas and opportunities for improving our processes.

    Opens 4 June 2024

Closed Consultations

We Asked, You Said, We Did

Here are some of the issues we have consulted on and their outcomes. See all outcomes

We asked

The budget the Council needed to set for 2024/25 was one of the biggest challenges East Lothian Council has ever faced.  This is because of the rising cost pressures and increasing demand on our services which is not being matched by increases in national funding.

Forecasts suggested that the Council could face a gap of over £27 million between its projected funding and what it spends on providing local services in the next financial year, 2024/25.

The Council carried out the budget consultation to get peoples’ views on the Council’s priorities, the commitments set out in its Financial Strategy to reduce the cost of services, potential savings and the level of Council tax increase.

You said

A full copy of the results of the survey is available at: 1124_Bdgt_Consltn___Analysis (1).pdf

472 people responded to the online survey (c. 0.5% of population over 16).

Of those who responded:

  • 88.5% said that the Growing our People objective is Very Important and 9% said it is Somewhat Important
  • 66% said Growing our Capacity is Very Important and 28% said it is Somewhat Important
  • 60.5% said Growing our Communities is Very Important and 31.5% said it is Somewhat Important
  • 41% said Growing our Economy is Very Important and 47% said it is Somewhat Important

The most favoured options for reducing spending were Early Intervention & Prevention and Asset Rationalisation, and the least favoured option was Service Reduction.

The five options for which there was least support for service reduction as opposed to increasing Council Tax to protect the service were:

  • Investing in services for vulnerable children
  • Maintaining existing staffing levels within schools
  • Tackling anti-social behaviour and working to improve community safety
  • Supporting older people, e.g. care at home and care homes
  • Investing in the road network and street lighting

The five options for which there was most support to reduce the service were:

  • Providing discounts for empty business premises
  • Supporting tourism and the visitor economy
  • Investing in staff training and development
  • Supporting cultural activities like the arts and museums
  • Maintaining home to school transport

Respondents were asked to provide views on different levels of Councill Tax increase to protect council services. Almost as many respondents said they would support an increase of over £5 a week (20%) as said they did not support any increase in Council Tax (23%); 72% would support an increase of up to £3 per week; and 40% would support an increase of up to £5 a week.

We did

A full set of the results of the survey was reported to elected members before they deliberated on the 2024/25 Budget - 1124_Bdgt_Consltn___Analysis (1).pdf.

The budget was approved at a meeting of the Council on 20th February where Councillors agreed to accept Scottish Government funding to freeze the Council tax for a year.  The projection is that Council Tax will increase by 10% in the following year (2025/26) and by 5% in the following year.

In setting the budget the Council has tried to protect the Children’s Services and Education Services budgets as well as the budget supporting older people.  However, in order to do this, and balance the budget taking into account increases in Council Tax from new homes, the level of support grant from the Scottish Government and use of reserves and financial management measures, the Council had to make a total of just over £8m in efficiencies and budget savings. Almost £4m of these efficiencies and savings were put forward in the budget approved in February 2023; including, three weekly residual bin collections, a new charge for Garden Waste collection, and £1m from a review of council assets.

A further £4.5m efficiencies and savings were also approved including:

  • 100% Council Tax premium for 2nd homes (£900,000)
  • Charges from empty Non Domestic Rates Relief (£430,000)
  • Restructuring of management (£435,000)
  • Reduction in revenue budget for roads (£330,000)
  • Use of Under 22yr old bus pass for home to school transport, instead of council provided buses (£220,000)
  • Reduction in funding for Brunton Theatre Trust (£200,000) and Enjoy Leisure (£100,000)
  • Reduction in Library Service (£180,000)

We asked

We asked tenants, tenants and residents groups and ELTRP for their view on our proposals to increase rents.

The Council know that decisions they make about tenant's rent and how we spend the money we collect is extremely important during these challenging financial times.  Striking a balance between keeping rents affordable and being able to maintain services for our tenants is important for the Council and more vital than ever before.

With this in mind the Council consulted on three options for a rent increase, 5%, 6% or 7%.  Explaining the effect each of these options would have on our housing service.

You said

Of those who responded:

89% were happy with the level of consultation and information they get about the annual rent increase.

82% said they thought the rent they pay is good value for money.

86% opted for a 5% increase

11% for a 6% increase

3% for a 7% increase.

We did

All the feedback received was added to a report to inform the Elected Members of the outcome of the consultation.   Taking all of this into account, the rent level for 2024/25 was agreed at a meeting of the Council on 20th February where Councillors agreed to a 7% rent increase from 1st April 2024.   This is the only feasible option if we want to continue to improve our existing stock and meet our statutory requirements.

We will write out to all our tenants informing them of the outcome and the planned increase to their rent charge for 2024/25.

We asked

We asked tenants, tenants and residents groups and ELTRP for their views on our proposals to increase rents. 

The council is aware that for many tenants this year is possibly even more difficult with high inflation and a cost of living that is placing huge stresses on household finances notably around energy costs and the price of food. We explained that without a rent increase in April 2023, it will be impossible for the Council to continue to deliver the current level of service including its ambitious capital programme.

With these factors in mind we set out a range of options 0%, 3% and 5% and explained the effect that each of these options would have on our housing service.

 

You said

Of those who responded to our consultation:

  • 92% were happy with the level of consultation and information they received about the annual rent increase
  • 85% thought that the rent they pay is good value for money

 

We did

All the feedback received was added to a report to inform the Elected members of the outcome of the consultation. The report will be heard at the Council’s Special Budget Meeting in February 2023.  At that meeting, a decision will be taken regarding the rent increase.  We will write out to all tenants after this meeting to inform them of the outcome and any planned incrrease to their rent charge for 2023/2024.