Fife Council is pressing ahead with its care home replacement programme – despite delaying a decision on a new unit for Cupar.
The policy and co-ordination committee had been due to consider a proposal to reduce the size of the planned replacement for Northeden Care Home in Cupar from 36 beds to 24 with 12 supported flats.
However, an intervention by Cupar councillors Margaret Kennedy and Tony Miklinski, Led to the item being pulled from Thursday’s agenda to allow further consultation on the plans to take place.
The scheme is part of a £18 million plan to replace council-run care homes, which also includes Methil and Anstruther.
Councillors went on to vote 17-4 in favour of the business case for a replacement for Ladywalk House in Anstruther on a site at Mayview Court.
It will accommodate 24 residential care home beds, 12 extra care housing units and shared services, with two specific needs housing bungalows on the same site.
Conservative councillor Dave Dempsey had called for the Anstruther decision to be deferred along with Cupar, suggesting the business case had not properly considered all of the options – in particular the idea of reprovisioning all beds in the independent sector over a three-year period.
“It’s the 21st century equivalent of Henry Ford’s colour chart…you can have any option as long as it’s this one,” he said.
However, Labour councillor David Graham said privatisation was not a desirable option.
“During our consultation people in Anstruther overwhelmingly wanted to continue with local authority provision in the town,” he insisted.
Work has already started on a new care village on the site of the former Kirkland High School in Methil, but overspends saw a scaled-back proposal drawn up for Cupar with the Anstruther replacement expected to follow that.
Liberal Democrat councillor Ms Kennedy said no consultation over the revised Cupar plans had taken place.
“I was completely surprised when I saw the new proposals,” she said.
“I have personally campaigned for years to have this new facility provided in Cupar therefore was extremely disappointed that changes had been made without my full understanding.”
Mr Miklinski said he was pleased the request for a delay was granted after learning the Cupar plans had been changed.
“As the local elected representatives of the Cupar community, we have a duty to ensure that the needs of our constituents are fully understood and the best possible service delivered,” he added.