A DUMBARTON councillor has revealed that “there is work going on in the background” following public uproar in reaction to council cuts to grass cutting.

Councillor Iain McLaren told members of Silverton and Overtoun Community Council last week that concerns surrounding the issue “are being noticed by the highest level of the council”.

However, it is unclear at this stage whether this means there will be any change in the new grass cutting regime around the area, which has seen a number of grassed areas left to grow – much to the anger of many residents.

Silverton and Overtoun community councillors had pressed Cllr McLaren on whether anything could be done regarding the cuts.

Secretary Rose Harvie said of the cuts to grass cutting: “It was a regrettable decision.”

A number of issues were listed by members as concerns surrounding grass cutting and the introduction of new ‘biodiversity areas’ following the 2018 budget.

They included the potential spread of hogweed; dog owners who may “have an incentive” to not clean up after their pets if the grass is long; and the question of how long the grass would be allowed to grow.

The SNP councillor responded: “Things like that are not just being noticed by members of the public. They’re being noticed by the highest level of the council.

“There’s work going on in the background which may alleviate some of it, but it’s too early to say.”

Following the meeting, Cllr McLaren reiterated that this issue is “being raised at the highest levels”.

When approached by the Reporter, council leader Councillor Jonathan McColl did not elaborate on whether the SNP administration is now considering a reversal of the grass cutting cuts.

Dumbarton Councillor David McBride, of Scottish Labour, was also present at the Silverton and Overtoun meeting last week.

He condemned the cuts, and said “everybody in Dumbarton is talking about it” when it comes to the issue of grass cutting. He added: “The whole thing’s an absolute nonsense. Another few weeks and the place is going to be an absolute disgrace. The cuts were not necessary this year.

“It’s unsustainable, it can’t go on. It has to be revised, and sooner rather than later.”

In its February budget, the council agreed to reduce grass cutting service from weekly to fortnightly – or fortnightly to three weekly – to save £136,000 a year. It also agreed to remove summer bedding displays to save £80,000 annually.