THE SNP GROUP will continue to talk with Independent and Labour members at Moray Council – but still refuse to consider discussions with the Conservative group.
Following the adjournment of the first Full Council today after less than three minutes, the joint leaders of the nine-strong SNP group said that they are hoping to continue discussions with Labour and Independent councillors.
They are seeking to find if there is the potential to form a partnership that would provide “a stable foundation to navigate Moray Council”.
Joint SNP leader Shona Morrison said: “The SNP group first wrote a letter to all the independent councillors and Councillor Divers, on the day of the count.
“Being a new Councillor myself, I recognise that there are a lot of new characters in the chamber and it will take time for a trust to develop for working in partnership. We have shared an example of a partnership agreement with the Independents that has been used elsewhere, as an idea of how we would like to work with each other.
“We all recognise that it is more important to take more time rather than making a rash move that could collapse and leave us no further forward.
“Ultimately the public of Moray have voted for councillors with very different perspectives on how Moray’s services should be delivered and it is challenging to form an administration in those circumstances but we are not shying away from that challenge and there is a significant effort being made to reach a way forward.”
There is no doubting the willingness of the SNP to broker a deal with Independent and Labour councillors – however, the people of Moray have every right to ask questions on why they and the Conservative group continue to refuse to talk to each other.
Part of the problem is the General Election with the Tory/SNP parties locally locked in that particular battle away from the Council chamber.
But it is away from the Council Chamber – it should have no impact, nor is it enough for either party to cite “different perspectives” as a reason not to even talk to each other.
Like it or not, political allegiances do play a role in our local council – but that role should never take precedence over what is good for Moray and our communities.
As Councillors are all told when they are elected: “You will have a duty to represent the views of your community and their needs. This is not restricted to your own ward as you must be objective and take into consideration the needs and well-being of all Moray residents and the community as a whole.”
Time the 25 men and woman elected earlier this month gave that a greater precedence than party political expedience.