Words have to become action

editorial image

The “warm words” in the final report of the recent Dumfries and Galloway Transport Summit “must be turned into action” according to South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth.

The MSP’s call comes as the Scottish Government published the final report from the summit that includes a summary of the submissions made during the consultation on the draft report.

The report will now be submitted to the Scottish Government’s review of their National Transport Strategy and the Strategic Transport Projects Review.

Colin Smyth, who also Chair’s Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Economy Committee and was one the three key note speakers at the summit where he called for a fairer funding mechanism for infrastructure projects to ensure Dumfries and Galloway secured a greater level of investment, believes the reviews must now lead to firm proposals for major investment in the region’s transport links.

He said: “Although the Government have called this the final report on the summit, they are in for a surprise if they think anyone in Dumfries and Galloway thinks this is the end of matter.

“As far as we’re concerned the publication of this report is only the start of the discussion with the Scottish Government over which transport projects in Dumfries and Galloway should receive Government investment. Both the evidence given at the summit and in submissions during the public consultation make the overwhelming economic case for fairer funding for Dumfries and Galloway so we can see improvements to trunk roads such as the A75, A76 and A77, improvements in rail services serving the region and better promotion for active travel. The Scottish Government needs to deliver on this through their review of the National Transport Strategy and the Strategic Transport Projects Review and I will certainly be putting pressure on them to do just that. Warm words must be turned into action by the Scottish Government.”

The Summit was held in Dumfries on 22 August.