Matheson won’t be ‘held to ransom’ by contractors
Transport Secretary Michael Matheson yesterday said he was not prepared to be “held to ransom” over the AWPR contractors’ compensation claim.
Giving evidence at Holyrood, Mr Matheson suggested the contractors had attempted to use negotiations to open the Stonehaven, Craibstone and Charleston stretch in an attempt to further their claim.
Mr Matheson said it was “disappointing” it had taken his personal intervention to get that part of the road open when it had been ready for two months.
North East MSP Lewis Macdonald asked the Transport Secretary if the fact that the contractors had a “change of heart” and opened the stretch was recognition that there was no financial benefit to be gained from their position.
Mr Matheson replied: “I suspect that the penny had dropped.
“I wasn’t prepared to be held to ransom on how they wanted to negotiate this process.”
Earlier, representatives of Balfour Beatty, Galliford Try and Aberdeen Roads Ltd answered “No” when asked by Lib Dem MSP Mike Rumbles if they were given “any indication that your claims for more taxpayers’ money over and above the fixed term contract would be looked at more favourably if you just opened the road?”