The Scottish Government’s Gaelic language plan could cost Aberdeenshire taxpayers more than £300,000, councillors will be told this week.
Ministers want to promote the acquisition of speaking, reading and writing skills in Gaelic. The Gaelic Language Act also has the aim of making it the official language of Scotland and of having equal respect with English.
Last year, Aberdeenshire Council approved an action plan to increase the numbers who can speak the ancient language, despite councillors admitting they would rather invest in the promotion and development of Doric.
On Thursday, the authority’s policy and resources committee will be asked to consider a report which includes the possible appointment of a Gaelic language officer at a cost of £100,000 over three years.
Council officers have also warned of an “additional cost burden” that could include more than £200,000 to make changes to road signs and bring in a bilingual logo.
They have also admitted the bilingual logo might receive a “negative public response”.
North-east Conservative MSP Alex Johnstone said that Aberdeenshire did not have a Gaelic tradition and accused the Scottish Government of attempting to “impose” one on the area.
North-east singer Robert Lovie, a well-known figure across the region, said the plan was an “insult to Doric.”
“We do our best to keep the Doric alive and going, and Gaelic is a beautiful language, but it is not something we use here. I think all the Gaelic speakers are trying to keep the Gaelic alive on the west and we are trying to keep the Doric alive in the east.”