South La­nark­shire Coun­cil could re­join COSLA

Rutherglen Reformer - - News -

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil could re­join lo­cal gov­ern­ment body COSLA ac­cord­ing to coun­cil leader Ed­die McAvoy.

The lo­cal author­ity left the body in March 2015 to join the break­away Scot­tish Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Part­ner­ship (SLGP) along­side Glas­gow and Aberdeen city coun­cils and Ren­frew­shire Coun­cil.

At that time Coun­cil­lor McAvoy said that the new part­ner­ship promised a new era of co-op­er­a­tion among lo­cal au­thor­i­ties.

How­ever, fol­low­ing a meet­ing with COSLA pres­i­dent Coun­cil­lor David O’Neill at South La­nark­shire’s Hamil­ton head­quar­ters, Coun­cil­lor McAvoy in­di­cated, in a joint state­ment, that there “may be merit” in South La­nark­shire re­join­ing COSLA.

He said: “I am very pleased that coun­cil­lor O’Neill took the time to come to Hamil­ton and out­line, in a fair bit of de­tail to me, how COSLA is changing fol­low­ing its re­cent re­view.

“When South La­nark­shire left COSLA we made it clear that we be­lieved changes were nec­es­sary.

“Since then we have worked well with our col­leagues in the SLGP and we have made sig­nif­i­cant progress in en­sur­ing that the voice of lo­cal gov­ern­ment is heard, es­pe­cially with re­gard to how gov­ern­ment poli­cies im­pact on our res­i­dents.

“How­ever, at the meet­ing I told coun­cil­lor O’Neill that if these changes to COSLA are pro­gressed there may be merit in the coun­cil re­con­sid­er­ing its mem­ber­ship of COSLA, but that this would be a de­ci­sion for the coun­cil fol­low­ing the elec­tion.” South La­nark­shire SNP group spokesman Coun­cil­lor Sheena Ward­haugh said:“The SNP group on South La­nark­shire Coun­cil op­posed com­ing out of COSLA.

“The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment will only ne­go­ti­ate with COSLA on the fund­ing set­tle­ment. We have to be in­volved in these ne­go­ti­a­tions, other­wise we are not rep­re­sent­ing the peo­ple of South La­nark­shire ef­fec­tively.”

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