Coun­cil­lors meet to elect lead­ers

The Oban Times - - FRONT PAGE -

TO­DAY will see the swear­ing in of 36 newly- elected Argyll and Bute coun­cil­lors, yet the SNP, the group with the great­est num­ber will not be part of the ad­min­is­tra­tion.

An al­liance of Tory, Lib­eral Demo­crat and in­de­pen­dent coun­cil­lors will take con­trol of the lo­cal au­thor­ity, leav­ing in place the ma­jor­ity of the ad­min­is­tra­tion who were in charge prior to the elec­tion.

The coun­cil will meet to elect a leader, a deputy leader, a provost, a deputy provost, the chair­man­ship of com­mit­tees, mem­bers of the plan­ning co­hort, area chair­man­ship and deputy chair­man­ship.

Also on the agenda are coun­cil­lors’ salaries, COSLA membership, li­cens­ing board membership, ap­point­ments to out­side bod­ies and com­mit­tee mem­ber­ships. Also to be elected at the meet­ing are teacher rep­re­sen­ta­tives and re­li­gious mem­bers who sit on the coun­cil.

While the lead­er­ship of the coun­cil will not be con­firmed un­til the first full coun­cil meet­ing to­day (Thurs­day), it is un­der­stood that Aileen Mor­ton, He­lens­burgh cen­tral ward, is in the run­ning for coun­cil leader de­spite also be­ing a gen­eral elec­tion can­di­date. This is Ms Mor­ton’s sec­ond term as a coun­cil­lor. Ms Mor­ton is stand­ing for elec­tion in the Dum­bar­ton seat, de­scribed by pun­dits as ‘the ‘tight­est’ elec­tion con­test in Scot­land.

Others who may have put their hat in the ring for lead­er­ship are thought to be Lib­eral Demo­crat Alan Reid, former MP from Dunoon, and Con­ser­va­tive and Union­ist Gary Mul­vaney, who had the high­est vote (1,789) in the coun­cil area.

The ad­min­is­tra­tion of the coun­cil will be m ade up from six Lib­eral Democrats, nine Con­ser­va­tives and at least seven of the 10 in­de­pen­dent coun­cil­lors.

A break­down of the lo­cal coun­cil first pref­er­ence vote shows that through­out the coun­cil area:

3,571 peo­ple voted for nine Lib­eral Demo­crat can­di­dates, elect­ing six.

9,172 peo­ple voted for 15 SNP can­di­dates, elect­ing 11. One UKIP can­di­date re­ceived 32 votes. 10 Con­ser­va­tive and Union­ist can­di­dates re­ceived 8,315 votes, elect­ing nine can­di­dates. Three green can­di­dates amassed 609 votes. 29 In­de­pen­dent can­di­dates col­lected 10,079 votes and elected 10 can­di­dates. The av­er­age vote from the 33,142 cast was 448, which 29 can­di­dates elected achieved. Turnout var­ied from 60.3 per cent in Cowal, to 47.5 per cent in Oban, South and Isles. The av­er­age turnout for Argyll and Bute was 53.27 per cent. In one ward, South Kin­tyre, an elec­tion was not re­quired

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