THE Cowdenbeath-Lochgelly area is to get a £250,000 boost to develop the local economy.

On Thursday, Fife Council's Policy & Co-ordination Committee reviewed the final position of the council’s budgets for the 2017-18 financial year and confirmed a £1million investment for economic development in Mid Fife in the year ahead.

Fife Council Co-Leader David Ross said: “When we set the budget for 2018-19 in February, we committed to putting up to £1m more into economic development and health and social care if there was enough surplus from 2017-18. Surplus budget arises if some departments don’t need to spend as much, or some services don’t cost as much, as we expect during a given year.

“The report confirmed that the funds are available and the committee agreed to split the additional £1m equally between the Cowdenbeath, Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy and Levenmouth areas.

"It’s these parts of Fife that face the greatest economic challenges, so this funding will help build a fairer Fife with opportunities for everyone.”

Co-Leader David Alexander added: “Our Plan for Fife is based on solid research. We know that, in general, the Mid Fife area isn’t doing as well as should be expected based on its demographics.

"Communities are facing high levels of deprivation, significant unemployment, disconnected neighbourhoods and poorer health than other parts of Fife. We’ve got to turn this around.

“£250,000 will be added to each of the existing local community planning budgets for Cowdenbeath, Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy and Levenmouth. Local councillors on the area committees will work with officers and communities to decide how this money can be put to best use to develop their local economy.”

A £1m enhancement to the council’s funding for the Fife Health and Social Care Partnership was also agreed.

The Partnership will decide how this budget, along with the rest of it’s funding from Fife Council and NHS Fife is used.