Everyone moans about the council, it’s almost like a national sport.

The charges, Your Honour, are ‘it wastes money’ (See cycle lanes and trips abroad for councillors and officials).

It is further alleged ‘It devises money-making rackets’ (See bus gates and LEZ fines).

Furthermore, it is also responsible for too many potholes, not enough bins, too much litter and graffiti, and sky-high council tax bills.

READ NEXT: How much Glasgow City Council is owed in unpaid LEZ fines

While there can be reasoned arguments made to support the above, the facts are the services the council is expected to deliver are essential but the money it gets to deliver them, in recent years, has not matched that importance.

As a result of budget cuts, services have been slashed for the last 10 years and more.

Half a billion pounds has been wiped from Glasgow City Council’s budget in the last decade.

That pattern looks set to continue with the city’s top finance official this week estimating that the council will need to make savings of £120 million over the next three years.

For savings, read cuts. The alternative to cuts is a hike in charges.

The reality is we are likely to see both. No one is a winner.

One charge the council can’t hike next year is council tax as the First Minister says it will be frozen to help households with the cost of living.

READ NEXT: Glasgow City Council faces £120m cuts in next three years

Last year in Glasgow, council tax went up by 5%, next year it could have been more.

It is unlikely the government is going to fund more than a 3% rise, so the budget shortfall is going to be higher.

As well as the Scottish Government not funding councils adequately the big pressure facing councils is inflation.

This has been and is still getting worse.

An official this week informs the councillors: “For a significant number of years the Council has had to identify savings in order to produce a balanced budget. The inflationary pressure faced in recent times has significantly exacerbated this position.”

The cost of paying staff, the cost of heating and lighting offices and running depots, the cost of buying materials, fuel for vehicles and everything from a paper clip to running a gritter truck in the winter is costing more with every passing year.

So, just like every person with bills to pay, the council is wondering how it is going to pay them and how it is going to make the money it does have stretch to cover everything it is expected to do.

We can see evidence of the squeeze.

Bonfire Night display cancelled and fireworks at the Christmas lights switch-on cancelled, most likely because the cost of fireworks has, pardon the pun, rocketed due to manufacturing costs but largely shipping, as they mostly come from China.

The cuts have more serious implications than missing out on a fun display.

Services are being cut back, trimmed, and in some cases discontinued.

It is not new, a number of years ago one of the decisions taken was to scrap the money paid to housing associations for sheltered housing.

It has led to isolation and loneliness among many older people.

That is just one example where the impact is not as publicly visible, as say potholes on the roads, but every bit as serious.

Pressure on care services means staff have less time to spend with people as they are expected to deal with bigger workloads.

Community organisations, because so many are competing for diminishing resources, are being forced to either close or look to alternative funding sources, which are also highly competitive.

The finance boss mentioned earlier, has warned, as have politicians, that it is reaching the stage where the council will have to look at what services it can deliver and may have to take a decision not to provide some that it traditionally has.

He said: “Prioritisation of services identifying areas where services need to be reduced or ceased based on risk, affordability and demand."

A look at the money and where it goes shows the shortfall.

Roads are often the issue that attracts the most complaints, with potholes blighting journeys and coasting motorists in hefty repair bills.

The current figures show that the council calculates it needs £30.9m a year to maintain the roads, pavements, cycle lanes and lighting in a steady state.

That means maintaining them in their current condition.

But the amount allocated is only £19.7m.

Carriageways need £12.85m but only get £10.9m, pavements and cycleways need £2.25m but get £613,000.

Lighting needs £5.9m but gets £2.5m.

Only the Clyde Tunnel from the roads budget gets what is needed with £1.8m required but has had £2.45m spent in the last year.

This could be repeated right across the council.

It is not too alarming to say council services in the city are facing a crisis.

Unless they are funded properly, if the pattern of underfunding continues services will diminish to a level where the council is unable to function.

They are not additional extras but in so many cases are lifeline services relied on by some of the most vulnerable people in the city.

Services are needed and they need to be paid for and the Scottish Government must recognise that.