New council coalition outlines priorities

THE newly-formed Tory and SNP administration in Dumfries and Galloway Council this week launched a partnership agreement which outlined investment in services for vulnerable children and adults and £50 million of improvements to road and rail networks.

Leader of the council Ivor Hyslop said the agreement shows a commitment to the region to take forward its priorities.

He said: “This partnership is the mechanism to enable us to deliver those priorities.

“This partnership agreement allows us to deliver what we have promised. It is based on our two manifestos and ensures the best way to deliver together for Dumfries and Galloway.”

Depute leader Brian Collins said: “The SNP is pleased to be part of the administration of Dumfries and Galloway Council and taking an active part in moving our region forward.

“It is a tremendous responsibility but we are focused on the five years ahead.

“The partnership we have agreed enables us to deliver on the promises we made to the people of Dumfries and Galloway during the recent election.”

The agreement promised, among other things, to: invest in a programme of early intervention targeted at the region’s most vulnerable children; enhanced graduate employment opportunities over the next five years; appointment of a Carers Champion for each of the areas; encouraging housing investment in the region, in all sectors and embracing and enhancing community transport provision.

The manifesto also included plans to provide support and advice for people facing the implications of welfare reform, supporting local businesses to succeed in their bids for public sector contracts, re-invigorating towns and villages through investment in a Facelift Scheme, sponsoring festivals, community arts and events across the region, supporting CCTV systems throughout Dumfries and Galloway, addressing the problem of derelict buildings in communities by holding owners to account and reducing the number of council properties.

Office bearers were also agreed on Tuesday with Patsy Gilroy taking chair of the DG First management committee and Graham Nicol at the helm of the Planning Applications Committee as well as the Employment and Appeals Sub Committee.

Alistair Geddes is chairman of the Scrutiny and Performance Committee with Roberta Tuckfield taking the seat for Wigtown Area Committee. New Stranraer councillor Jim McClung will take the Housing Sub-Committee chairman’s role.