COUNCIL bosses are recommending axing staff and offloading community centres in a bid to save £130,000.

The savings – equal to the annual salary of West Dunbartonshire Council’s chief executive, Joyce White – would cut six jobs and mean opening hours being slashed at Glenhead Community Centre in Duntocher to match those at the library.

Opposition parties have condemned the options being put to the corporate services committee tomorrow.

The plan would also look to have the community take over Bowling Village Hall and West Dumbarton Activity Centre in Brucehill.

West Dunbartonshire Leisure Trust and the council agree that 35.3 full-time staff is an “over-provision”.

Officials considered other options, such as closing “low occupancy” centres at Bowling, Bonhill, Glenhead and Clydebank East, cutting six jobs and saving £133k.

Read more: Clydebank library hours cut across town in new timetable

A third option is to close Bowling, Bonhill and Glenhead and target Alexandria, axing 6.5 jobs and saving £142k.

Glenhead Community Centre’s opening hours would be significantly cut to match Duntocher Library’s part-time opening, and see some bookings move to Duntocher Village Hall or Antonine Sports Centre.

But Duntocher residents have reacted angrily and village hall organisers said they have not been involved in any consultation nor had any council contact about taking on more groups.

Phyllis Gillan, secretary of Duntocher Village Hall, said: “History is repeating itself. Are they trying to leave people with nothing? The big plan is for communities to take over running everything and then the council have nothing to do. I don’t know what they’re playing at.

“The administration byword when they took over was transparency. They have no right to refer people to the village hall or Antonine without consultation.”

Glenhead is open 60 hours a week and the library just 18. Council bosses suggest “harmonising” the two so library staff can help open and close Glenhead.

Council chiefs say an extra £57k a year could be saved by directing groups to alternative sites in Duntocher.

It has taken more than a year of consultation and analysis to identify the savings.

Council leader Jonathan McColl told the Post: “The consultation was extremely worthwhile and directly influenced the options being presented to committee.

“We believe that by using better management of resources rather than simply removing facilities from our communities, we can deliver the savings required without a single closure.”

Read more: Bright future ahead as keys handed over to Duntocher group

Labour Councillor Douglas McAllister said the previous SNP administration had closed what was then Duntocher Hall and moved everyone to Glenhead. Then Duntocher volunteers reopened the hall. He argued both facilities don’t compete with each other and both are needed.

Cllr McAllister hit out: “The SNP seem to have something against the community of Duntocher. It is always the target of their cuts. They have failed to consult with the public over this move and more concerning they have failed to consult with the village hall and Antonine Sports Centre who are now expected to pick up the slack.

“I’m also disappointed the SNP would consider this at a time when their own councillor is off ill because I presume he would never agree to this.”

Councillors agreed to find £130k in savings from community facilities back in March 2018.

A detailed analysis showed the 12 centres brought in more than £407k in 2018/19, for 634 opening hours a week. That works out as an average income of £12.85 an hour.

But the costs are almost £1.2million, leaving a loss of £766k last year. Almost £1m in costs comes from staffing.

The public were consulted first in August 2018, with 105 people turning up from 44 organisations. A total of 168 people responded to an online survey.

Council bosses said they were investing £5m across all their community centres, with £1m of that at Dalmuir Community Centre, £700k at the Denny Civic Theatre and almost £700k at Alexandria Community Centre.

West Dunbartonshire Council currently needs to save £9m on their budget for the coming year, assuming there is no Scottish Government bailout.