Angus & Mearns Liberal DemocratsWorking Year Round for Angus, Mearns & Stonehaven

Aug/16

29

Busy week dealing with constituents issues

By davidmay

IMG_2897

Recent constituent issues I am dealing with include recycling,council housing, an overflow pipe, speed limit, weeds the town, a drain and a planning question.

One of the more recent issues was the drain at the car park at Hillside Park which had been broken for some time. I contact the roads officer about it and am delighted that is now totally repaired and much better than it has been for years.

From:: David May

By davidmay

As a local councillor I agree with Willie Rennie , the Scottish Lib Dem leader that the FM must focus on economy not independence. I have seen first hand in Angus Council, that we have faced cuts in key areas such as college places, schools budgets and staffing and adult and care services as well as job losses in our area. Rennie is spot on when he called on the FM to use her energies on her parties failures and not on independence.

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie MSP was correct today when he said the oil shock and the Brexit shock should not be compounded by an independence shock as the latest Government Expenditure and Revenue Scotland (GERS) figures revealed that Scotland has a deficit of £14.8bn.

Scotland’s deficit is more than double the size of the UK deficit as a share of GDP.

Commenting Mr Rennie said:

“The nationalists’ case for independence has been swallowed up by £14 billion black hole. It’s a dark day for Scottish nationalism but it is even darker for the Scottish economy. The oil shock and the Brexit shock should not be compounded with an independence shock.

“Instead of pursuing a reckless gamble with independence the Scottish Government should have a laser like focus on boosting the economy by investing in our workforce with new money for education and a step change in mental health.”

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie MSP today said the oil shock and the Brexit shock should not be compounded by an independence shock as the latest Government Expenditure and Revenue Scotland (GERS) figures revealed that Scotland has a deficit of £14.8bn.

Scotland’s deficit is more than double the size of the UK deficit as a share of GDP.

Commenting Mr Rennie said:

“The nationalists’ case for independence has been swallowed up by £14 billion black hole. It’s a dark day for Scottish nationalism but it is even darker for the Scottish economy. The oil shock and the Brexit shock should not be compounded with an independence shock.

“Instead of pursuing a reckless gamble with independence the Scottish Government should have a laser like focus on boosting the economy by investing in our workforce with new money for education and a step change in mental health.”

From:: David May

The Scottish Government is currently running a consultation seeking views from the public on the proposed framework to transform mental health in Scotland.

This morning I made my contribution to this consultation highlighting the need to prioritise cutting down the unacceptably long waiting times prevalent in our mental health services.
I raised the need to increase accessibility to therapies rather than prescribing medication as a first resort and in particular the need to move away from cognitive behavioural therapy as a ‘one size fits all’ therapy and instead adopt a wider variety of therapies to match the needs of individual patients.
My full submission to the consultation can be found here.
The Government’s consultation is still open and I encourage anyone with experience of Scotland’s mental health services, whether as a patient or as a professional to make their own contribution to the consultation which can be found here.ImageVaultHandler.aspx

Aug/16

19

Busy week

By davidmay

In the last week I have been following up on issues raised with me about the Curly, the Borrowfield pond, a leaking pipe, a broken road sign, a disabled toilet, street lights not working, speeding and core paths in our area.

From:: David May

LibDem candidate ofr Monifieth & Sidlaw Ben Lawrie has criticised Angus Council's plan to axe the Monifieth recycling centre.

With the announcement that the council will be closing several recycling centres around Angus, Liberal Democrat council candidate Ben Lawrie has raised concerns surrounding the proposed closure of the Monifieth Recycling Centre.

“There are several reasons why I believe that closing this centre is a bad idea. Our environment is of the utmost importance yet we’re failing to incentivise people to recycle by making them travel longer distances to use recycling facilities. Not only will longer journeys to these facilities impact our carbon footprint, people will also be less likely to make the effort at all, instead opting to fly-tip at the council’s expense.”
“The closure of the recycling centre, paired with the new garden waste collection charges are a double whammy of bad news for the residents of Monifieth as well as the local environment and I hope that the Council will soon see sense.”

Changes to recycling facilities in Angus are projected to save £246,500 – falling short of planned savings.

Signup to Ben’s local newsletter for updates on the campaign to save the recycling centre

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Aug/16

16

Great work by YM in Montrose

By davidmay

Communities committee today – my comments

Report on youth work and youth engagement

The work done by the YM is to be hugely commended as I am personally aware of both groups, of what they do through their youth café and the Friday Night Project at Borrowfield with young people.

They have helped youngsters to get involved in positive activities and gain confidence and skills in various programmes that are run. This I know is hugely appreciated by not only the young people, but also their parents, homes the police and the neighbouring community.

One of the strong features is the great work done by volunteers in the Borrowfield Friday night project who play a huge role in its success and in my view thieservice level agreement the council have with the YM is money well spent as it does make such a positive difference.

From:: David May

By davidmay

Arbroath 2000 report – my comments

I have been to the historic Arbroath Abbey with visitors from abroad and having also visited Melrose Abbey. As a result of being impressed with what Melrose offered to, I hope we can lobby Historic Scotland to make a visit to Arbroath Abbey even better by developing an audio tour, in different languages, as this will make a huge different to the visitor experience. and make it an even better attraction. If Historic Scotland could also enhance their cafe facilities this would also help to attract even more visitors to what is one of Angus best places to visit..

From:: David May

Aug/16

16

Integrating the access office and library

By davidmay

Integration of access office and library – my comments today at the communities committee

I am delighted to see that at last the integration of the access offices and the libraries in some of our burghs, is being achieved as this will not only enable better use of our council properties but will also mean a one stop shop for people in each of the burghs. I additionally hope that, as our some police counters in Angus, such as the one in Montrose have been closed, it will also mean that local people can contact these one stop shops with issues which can be directly referred to the police as in my view this is very important to have this face to face contact.

The closure of the police counters has in my view been a bad decision for many local people as it has meant it is now much more difficult to directly report issues and make contact with the police. The idea of a one stop shop involving the police would help to improve this situation so I support it.

From:: David May

Aug/16

16

Core paths in Montrose

By davidmay

Angus Council core paths plan – my comments

Several constituents have raised with me both directly and through social media about the path from Charleton to Kinnaber, and the cycle way /path at Montrose airfield.

Furthermore , as a regular user of both paths I like many of my constituents would agree that the council officers have worked hard to get a solution to the issues about each of the paths and have devised a good and practical solution to each.

I was delighted to hear from the director that he will provide us with details of who will pay for this and also information of when this will be done or the time frame as many people will welcome the changes.

From:: David May

By davidmay

I must admit that Scottish Liberal Democrat business manager Mike Rumbles MSP is right to say that stacking Holyrood Committees with aides to government ministers fosters complacency and undermines democratic scrutiny.

Mr Rumbles is set to table a series of parliamentary questions in an attempt to get a clear picture from the Scottish Government about the privileged information that is given to the MSPs involved.

Commenting, Mr Rumbles said:

“The Committee system is designed to hold Ministers to account and provide forensic scrutiny of government actions.

“Putting ministerial insiders onto the committee closes down scrutiny and fosters complacency in government.

“A strong democracy needs to have those in power challenged robustly. That can’t happen if people involved in scrutiny are at the same time working for the government.

“Parliamentary Liaison Officers may have helped their bosses prepare for committee hearings. But the public needs committee members who are relentless in their questioning of Ministers, not cheerleaders. The SNP have lost their majority and are trying to make sure they get a soft ride from committees

“We need to understand what impact these appointments will have on the ability of Holyrood committees to do their job. If necessary the committee appointments must be re-voted by Parliament.

“I am set to table a series of questions to ministers to find out how much information is being fed to their aides.”

From:: David May

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