SAVINGS of almost £500,000 have been made this financial year to West Dunbartonshire Council’s budget.

The local authority has been monitoring the services it offers and making so-called “management adjustments” in a bid to balance the books ahead of the March deadline.

Council bosses need to close a £9million gap currently projected for 2020/21, and managers annually try to make savings by merging contracts or streamling their work.

But past years have controversially included cuts to services or jobs lost.

The last round of adjustments were discussed at the corporate services committee last week. But concerns were raised about the effect these cuts would have on communities.

Lomond councillor Martin Rooney, of Labour, said: “What impact has this had on performance?

“Has this affected the performance and communication with the public and their satisfaction rates?

“I wonder how much of an impact the cuts are having.”

Cllr Rooney was informed by a council officer that it is their intention to deliver to the community despite financial hardship.

The officer said: “It is always our intention as a corporate management team to ensure that we deliver effectively for the citizens of West Dunbartonshire.

“We try to manage with less funding which we find ourselves facing year-on-year.

“We find it quite challenging in an area where we have got high levels of deprivation that we do not have any additionality on funding.

“We have got to look to service redesign.

“That is an ongoing process which is under way.

“We are able to deliver against the financial targets that you as a council set for us.”

Questions were then asked about the number of vacant posts and the affect that was having on residents.

Another council officer responded: “There are two vacancies within change support, one of the teams which sits within technology.

“One of the roles has been vacant for some time as a result of moving on, and we have managed that workload amongst the remaining team.”

“We decided to have a more cohesive joined up team and that is working well.”

Councillors will continue to monitor the council’s spending ahead of next year’s budget.