THIS week's Councillor's Column is written by Gary Mulvaney, Conservative councillor for Helensburgh Central and chair of the Helensburgh and Lomond area committee.
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The Day Job: With Nicola Sturgeon due to speak to the SNP faithful at their party conference next week, is there any chance that the SNP government will tell us what they have actually achieved in the past ten years and what they plan to do next?
For example, it would be nice to hear about how they will improve our education system, maybe making it better than Estonia or Vietnam; how they will deal with the pressures in the Scottish health service, or how they will grow our economy as fast as the rest of the UK. Sensible? Commonsense?
But in reality a forlorn hope, with Ms Sturgeon more interested in promoting her indyref2, whatever the cost to Scotland.
Surely it’s time for Nicola Sturgeon to realise that the majority of Scots want her to get on with the day job and stop obsessing with re-running the referendum.
Working Together: I was pleased to attend the recent signing ceremony of the ‘memorandum of understanding’ between the council, Royal Navy, community partners, and UK government.
This strategic document sets out how we can work together to maximise the benefit for all.
With millions of pounds of investment in Faslane and more people coming to the area, there is a genuine opportunity for the community, naval families and local businesses to all benefit.
I was interested to hear about the Drumfork club refurbishment; the fact that improved train timetables are being discussed and that even the possibilities of re-opening Shandon station are being considered.
Lots of good joined up thinking.
I just couldn’t believe that the only comment from the SNP after the event was to criticise the photograph of a submarine on the cover of the Royal Navy’s document – what did they expect, a Challenger tank?
Budget: It was disappointing that opposition members didn’t support our budget that gave £1 million more to social care than what they had proposed in their alternative.
Nationalist members Robb, Trail and Dance also failed to support the extra £2.5 million capital expenditure for roads and footpaths which is a shame considering the improvements that it will make in this area.
But I suppose the SNP had done enough already, having cut Argyll and Bute’s funding by another £6 million and hiked the council tax on band E-H homes.