More of the same please

The bat­tle for coun­cil seats is now hot­ting up as the can­di­dates get set for elec­tion day

Rutherglen Reformer - - Election Special - Rutherglen Sth -

LABOUR

Labour in South La­nark­shire has worked with the com­mu­nity to un­der­take a rad­i­cal re­gen­er­a­tion of Fern­hill with brand new and re­fur­bished hous­ing stock.

In ad­di­tion, we have seen the start of a pro­gramme of en­vi­ron­men­tal up­grades in Spring­hall and hous­ing in­vest­ment across the whole of Ruther­glen South, bring­ing all coun­cil prop­er­ties up to the Scot­tish Hous­ing Qual­ity Stan­dard. If elected, I will sup­port con­tin­ued re­gen­er­a­tion and push for a faster pace of in­vest­ment in Blair­beth and Spring­hall. Hous­ing is still one of the big­gest is­sues that peo­ple raise on the doors, that is why Labour is com­mit­ted to build­ing an­other 1000 coun­cil houses by 2020.

Lo­cal buses are a life­line. Buses should be run for peo­ple, not profit. Coun­cils must have the power to reg­u­late buses and I will fight for the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment to de­liver that power to our coun­cil.

A Labour ad­min­is­tra­tion will stand up and fight against con­tin­ued cuts to our bud­gets to de­liver the in­vest­ment our com­mu­ni­ties want and de­serve.

SNP

There’s no sense in the coun­cil de­lay­ing re­pairs – costs only rise as a con­se­quence. Lo­cal coun­cil­lors should be pick­ing is­sues up and deal­ing with them, en­sur­ing the coun­cil is spending your money wisely.

An SNP-led coun­cil will work with the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment to en­sure that a proper share of Scot­land’s 50,000 new af­ford­able homes are built in South La­nark­shire.

De­ci­sions have been made be­hind closed doors for too long. An SNP-led ad­min­is­tra­tion will de­vote one per cent of the coun­cil’s budget to a com­mu­nity-con­trolled fund – giv­ing peo­ple a proper say.

By 2020, we aim to de­liver 1140 hours a year of free early learn­ing and child care for vul­ner­a­ble two-year-olds and all three- and four-year-olds, sav­ing fam­i­lies over £3000 per child per year. We will build new early learn­ing and child­care cen­tres, and train the staff needed.

SLC have three mem­bers on the SPT board – none are SNP. Labour and the Tories should have done more to raise bus pro­vi­sion.

LIB DEM

Ruther­glen South has seen ma­jor im­prove­ments with the re­gen­er­a­tion pro­gramme in Fern­hill and Cathkin. Lib Dems now want to speed up tack­ling prob­lems in older coun­cil houses – old crum­bling rough­cast and roofs in ar­eas like Cathkin, Blair­beth, Spit­tal and Fern­hill; prob­lems with back courts, de­cay­ing ten­e­ment closes and bin shel­ters in Spring­hall. Ten­ants are en­ti­tled to de­cent houses and are right to com­plain.

The more flexible and ex­ten­sive pre-school pro­vi­sion par­ents ex­pect is un­doubt­edly putting pres­sure on lo­cal school and nursery places. The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment have made a mess of teacher re­cruit­ment numbers (with teacher numbers al­ready 4000 down from 2007) and lo­cal schools strug­gle to get both sup­ply and per­ma­nent teach­ers. Mak­ing sure our schools and nurs­eries are prop­erly staffed must be a top priority for the new coun­cil.

It is also time to deal with traf­fic dan­ger hotspots – like Broomieknowe Road, Fern­hill Road or Grey­stone Av­enue – and to limit ob­struc­tive park­ing on pave­ments.

CON­SER­VA­TIVE

Im­prov­ing pub­lic trans­port links for Cathkin, Fern­hill, Spring­hall and Spit­tal would be my priority if elected in May. It is clear that the cur­rent bus ser­vices are in­fre­quent and in­ad­e­quate and it is es­sen­tial that we find a so­lu­tion which con­nects our area more ef­fec­tively.

This will en­sure that shop­ping ar­eas, work places and Ruther­glen Health Cen­tre are more ac­ces­si­ble for res­i­dents in Ruther­glen South.

Hous­ing re­gen­er­a­tion has been a great suc­cess in Fern­hill but it is im­por­tant that other parts of our com­mu­nity are not for­got­ten by South La­nark­shire Coun­cil. When re­gen­er­a­tion does take place, it is im­por­tant that lo­cal ser­vices are pro­vided to match. Life­style in East­field is a great fa­cil­ity but the lack of ef­fi­cient trans­port links makes it in­ac­ces­si­ble to any­one who doesn’t have a car.

The coun­cil should not sim­ply use fi­nan­cial con­straints as an ex­cuse for fail­ing to carry out es­sen­tial re­pairs. If elected I will de­mand greater trans­parency to en­sure tax­pay­ers’ money is spent wisely on things like es­sen­tial re­pairs to hous­ing.

GREEN

Res­i­dents con­cerns show that lo­cal ser­vices have not been meet­ing ex­pec­ta­tions. The dissatisfaction with lo­cal bus ser­vices and home re­pairs con­tinue to be un­der threat by the cur­rent ad­min­is­tra­tion. As for the bus routes specif­i­cally, the Greens will always put the pub­lic needs over busi­ness prof­itabil­ity and ide­o­log­i­cally prefers all trans­port to be pub­licly owed; in­stead of op­er­ated for profit which is con­tribut­ing to these prob­lems.

As for so­cial hous­ing, leisure fa­cil­i­ties and ac­cess to early years ed­u­ca­tion, these are cru­cial and should be de­liv­ered lo­cally and ac­ces­si­ble for all. A vote for me is a vote for rad­i­cal democ­racy that will de­liver what com­mu­ni­ties want through col­lab­o­ra­tion. This is by con­sul­ta­tion and always re­spect­ing the needs of the com­mu­nity.

Many of your in­ter­vie­wees ex­pressed frus­tra­tion to­wards a pub­lic body that ex­ists to rep­re­sent them. I find to be un­ac­cept­able. A change is needed to put the com­mu­nity at the heart of the de­bate through en­gage­ment.

Con­trast Ruther­glen South is a ward of con­trasts, from af­flu­ent sub­urbs like Burn­side to hous­ing schemes which score high in the so­cial de­pri­va­tion in­dex such as Fern­hill 130417burn­side_1

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