Fife Council has attempted to "short-change" Dalgety Bay over a new community centre for the town.

That's Tory councillor Dave Dempsey's view, who said that after a planning application for a new 'Dalgety Bay Sports Annex or Community Centre' was submitted, he uncovered a new centre was never intended and up to £250,000 of capital funds will only enhance the sports centre.

He said: "In a late addition to their budget, the ruling Labour group used some of the extra cash from Holyrood to generate funds for new capital projects. They produced a list that included ‘Dalgety Bay Sports Annex or Community Centre’. Unlike the rest of the list, there was no cash allocation attached.

“Now, a month later, a figure has appeared. It’s £200,000-250,000, in marked contrast to the multi-million pound new build projects elsewhere in Fife. That won’t pay for a community centre. I now find that it was never intended to.

“The plan that has emerged is to enhance the sports centre ‘to accommodate a larger gym, conversion of the existing gym to an aerobic studio and converting the existing vending/viewing area into a spinning studio’."

A feasibility study is now under way for the project but Cllr Dempsey questioned why the public were not being consulted.

He added: "If ever there was an object lesson in how not to do things, this is it. Money arrives unexpectedly (good) but it burns holes in Labour’s pockets so they have to get it spent. No question of sitting down and asking what it might best be spent on.

“Next they decide on an amount. Then they think about what they might get for that. But at no point are the public – the folk who pay for all this – consulted. Dalgety Bay deserves better."

Deputy leader of Fife Council, Lesley Laird, said: "Unfortunately the Tory candidate has a history of rubbishing something before it's even had the chance to be considered.

"Case in point was as a member of the previous South West Fife area committee when he rejected proposals to redevelop Fraser Avenue – instead kicking it into the long grass until after 2017. Fife Labour did not allow that decision to stand, otherwise residents would still be waiting for decent housing.

"Everyone recognises Dalgety Bay needs new community and playpark facilities, and this investment is the starting point. But instead of welcoming investment here we have the Tory candidate, who has represented the ward for 10 years, and done nothing positive about this issue, now criticising efforts that will actually start to improve things."

SNP councillor for Dalgety Bay, Alice McGarry, said: "There is a serious democratic deficit in the way the Labour administration of Fife Council manages much of its capital programme. Projects are dreamed up by the administration and monies are allocated to pet projects without any business case or local input.

"Dalgety Bay Community Centre requires to be substantially upgraded or replaced and this is a discussion that needs to be had and a business case prepared. I had hoped that the inclusion of Dalgety Bay in the budget was an indication that the community centre's shortcomings were being recognised.

"I am disappointed therefore to learn that money has been allocated instead to the sports centre without any local discussion or consultation."