Council chiefs have been accused of giving away Ayrshire money to other local authorities.
South Ayrshire bosses have been blasted by one MSP for investing their spare cash in councils south of the border.
And now Chic Brodie, SNP for the South of Scotland, has written to council leader Bill McIntosh for an explanation on the figures.
The balance sheet reveals £18 million of South Ayrshire money has been given to councils, such as Birmingham and Salford, in the form of investment loans.
Mr Brodie wants to know why that money is not being spent on services closer to home.
He said: “Why should South Ayrshire Council cash reserves, paid for by the people of South Ayrshire, be invested in councils such as Birmingham City Council rather than in local jobs and projects?
“We need a very full explanation as to what the investment strategy is for council cash reserves.”
He added: “What compounds this is that in the last reported financial year, the current council also under-spent to the tune of £3.7 million. This is the kind of strategy that a bank would follow, not that of a progressive council.
“Without a full explanation, the implied strategy is wholly unacceptable.”
But council executive, Eileen Howat, insists the investment with other authorities is normal financial practice.
She said: “As a result of varying cashflow throughout the year, South Ayrshire Council, in common with other local authorities, occasionally operates with a cash surplus.
“Such funds are invested on a temporary basis and the financial return is then reinvested in local services.
“Investment with other councils and money market funds is in line with the council’s treasury management strategy.”