Notes from a Councillor
Unbelievably we have now entered 2018 although it seems only yesterday that everyone was preparing for the Millennium celebrations.
On a personal level I am happy to say that so far I have lived up to my New Years resolution of attending the gym more regularly, although the fact that it is only the third week of January does put this achievement into perspective.
At Council a lot of time is being devoted to the Budget process which will lead to a Council Budget for 2018 to 2019 being decided. Budget day is scheduled for the 15th February. It is a new experience for me being part of the Opposition Group at Council and we will have to see what the new Conservative led Administration chooses to do with their Budget proposals. As part of the SNP Opposition Group I know that we will have different ideas as to what our spending priorities would be however, I know that for Councillors of all political hues that this is a difficult period, with budgetary constraints and know that none of us make any decisions lightly.
I am happy to say that discussions between Perth & Kinross car parking Officers and the Post Office have led to the provision of a mobile service coming to Dunkeld. This will be provided by a Post Office liveried vehicle which will park in the North car park. Initially this will be for a three month trial period beginning in March, dates and times will be confirmed and widely advertised. This will enable the Post Office to continue their search for a permanent location in Dunkeld. If any retailer thinks that their premises and business would be a good fit with and could accommodate the Post Office I would urge them to contact the Post Office direct.
On January 8th I attended a Community Council hosted event on A9 Dualling which was very well attended. It gave an update on how the whole Dualling planning process for the section from the pass of Birnam to Jubilee Bridge has changed over the last three years and resulted in this ground-breaking, innovative situation we now find ourselves at. This has been achieved through the hard work of members from within our own community of Dunkeld & Birnam. I urge everyone with an interest in finding a safe, sensible and sustainable solution to engage in the co-creative process which has been set up and to feed their ideas into it. We should all encourage our children and grandchildren to take part as they will be the ones who will live and drive with the new dualled A9 in the years to come.
The Council unanimously supported a motion to voice our concern over proposed RBS branch closures in Perth & Kinross. I fear if this goes unchallenged it could set a precedent for other national businesses to make cuts to local services.
Looking forward to adopting five more rescue hens this weekend although I don’t know if they will be thanking me for subjecting them to a free-range existence in this weather after spending their short life so far indoors in an intensive egg laying facility. On the subject of birds and the wintery weather I hope everyone is feeding and watering our wild garden birds.
Councillor Grant Laing
Local SNP Councillor, Strathtay Ward 5
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