In the Scotsman on 15 November 2007 Professor Norman Bonney, Vice-President of the Association of Scottish Community Councils, wrote:
"Scotland’s 1200 community councils are one of the most neglected and underdeveloped institutions of representative democracy in the Scottish political system. Across Scotland – in islands, Highland villages, small burghs, suburbs, private and public housing estates and in central city areas - groups of citizens meet monthly to seek to remedy problems requiring attention in their neighbourhoods, draw the attention of local authority councillors and officials and Scottish and UK parliamentarians to them, and engage in a variety of activities that enhance life in their local communities."
The Highland Council web site tells us that:
Community Councils were established as a result of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973. They do not have statutory duties or powers, and are essentially voluntary bodies established within a statutory framework.
The key roles of Community Councils are:
- To represent the views of the community to The Highland Council and other public bodies operating in their area
- To act to further the interests of their communities
- To be consulted on planning applications within their area (The Town & Country Planning (General Development Procedure) (Scotland) Amendment Order 1996)
- To consider exercising their powers to object to the granting, renewal or transfer of liquor licences. (The Licensing (Scotland) Act 1976)