Council Budget 2019-2023

Spending and savings - 2019 to 2023

We deliver a vast range of services to people who live and work in Edinburgh. In 2019/20 we’ll spend £1 billion on services. This includes:

  • £66.7 million on new or refurbished primary and secondary schools across the city
  • £59.3 million on early years services, doubling provision by April 2020
  • £48.9 million for asset management works, as part of five-year £153 million investment programme
  • £30 million towards fixing potholes and resurfacing roads, as part of four-year £125 million roads programme
  • £11 million to upgrade street lighting to energy efficient LED lights
  • £5 million in improving active travel and £2.4 million on cycling projects.

We’ll also invest more money in:

  • health and social care: up to £15.7 million of additional investment to reflect increasing demand and new legislation
  • homelessness: fund rapid access accommodation pilot and provide funding for one housing officer in each locality focussed on preventing homelessness which builds on the £2 million of extra investment included in the 2018/19 budget
  • supported bus services: £250,000 towards enhanced services in rural west Edinburgh.

We'll also continue to spend in the services residents identified as being most important including:

  • £7.3 million pupil equity funding aimed at addressing the attainment gap in schools
  • £1.5 million additional funding for looked-after children (continued from 2018/19)
  • £3 million additional funding to address rising rolls, including pupils in need of additional support.


We continue to face financial challenges because:

  • of rising costs
  • of increased demand on our services as our population changes and grows
  • our income has not kept up with this rising demand.

Since 2012/13, we’ve saved around £250 million by working more efficiently and prioritising our services, but we estimate we must save a further £117 million by 2023.

Our priorities

So we must change how we deliver services and reduce spending in some areas. Our priorities will be to:

  • deliver high quality services
  • invest in prevention and early intervention
  • support the growth of our city
  • tackle poverty.

Speaking to residents 

We engage with residents and partner organisations every year before setting our budget. Read the feedback report on the budget proposals and the change strategy for 2019-2020..

You can read the full papers for the council budget meeting on 21 February here.

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