Published: 03/06/2017 08:55 - Updated: 29/05/2017 19:49

Call for councillors to take charge

I would like to thank all those who for voted me in the recent local elections. You gave me a total of approximately 200 votes.

Terry Monaghan tells attendees why they should vote for him at the Forres hustings.
Terry Monaghan tells attendees why they should vote for him at the Forres hustings.

I was the only candidate in Ward 8 who had no previous experience of the process and without the support of a political party. Having a party machine for support is a big advantage, as is being well-known in the area as a previous councillor.

While three of the elected councillors will slot back into the old familiar routine, I hope the new one will show greater vision, and have the guts to make Moray Council a more efficient and effective force for good.

Retired maths teacher, George Alexander, should ask why Moray council purchases are between 20 and 50 per cent higher than from other sources, and why it spends hundreds of thousands of pounds on "consultant fees" from outside the area, including travel and accommodation costs. The skills required are already within the council employee resource, and live locally.

Councillor Lorna Creswell, has been championing the Planning for Real project which has dragged on for years. It allows the planning department to sit back and pretend they are in kindergarten playing with their sticky stuff, brown paper, crayons and paint – there is no need for such elaborate models. Council planners

and road engineers have no understanding of ergonomics, time and motion, or work study. Forres Health and Care Centre is a classic example of a fancy building not really fit for purpose, with traffic management and a parking layout which is far from user friendly.

Re-elected for the SNP is Aaron McLean. It will be interesting to see what all the SNP councillors’ qualifications and life experiences will bring to the council for the good of Moray.

Champion for the Conservative party, Claire Feaver – I hope you drag the council into the 21st century. Council officers, led by too many lawyers, have in the past controlled councillors, while the elected representatives should have been demanding greater efficiency, productivity and commercial awareness, using local companies and individuals’ services. When the new councillors have selected their various committees, I hope the new chairs will have the courage to take seats on the raised seating at the front of the chambers which have traditionally been the reserve of the officers. This is a position of advantage and

dominance. It is time that councillors took charge and carried out the public services they were elected to do in a timely, efficient and cost-effective manner.

Their first act should be to introduce a five-year, renewable, employment contract for all new council employees and any promotions to new positions.

Their second act should be to offer early retirement to all council lawyers, including the CEO, who are heads of departments other than the legal department. This will help create greater integration and co-operation between departments.

Terry Monaghan, address supplied.

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