Glasgow, Councillors and Conflicts of Interest
I wrote to the party group leaders in Glasgow City Council recently regarding the conflict of interest which arises if MSPs and Scottish Ministers employ local councillors as part of their office support staff.
So far the silence has been deafening.
Not one of the party leaders has had anything to say from which I surmise that the SNP, Labour and Tories are all playing the same game to a greater or lesser extent.
Logically, the SNP must be by far the worst offenders because they have more MSPs than anyone else and until two special 'Green government jobs' were created, only SNP MSPs held ministerial posts.
To my mind this is very unhealthy for local democracy as it's impossible to imagine a local councillor who enjoys a 2nd or 3rd job with an MSP/Scottish minister speaking up on sensitive or controversial issues - council cuts or self-ID, for example.
In practical terms this would require a councillor to bite the hand that feeds them, so to speak, which is why this kind of conflict should never arise in the first place.
So if anyone has information to share please drop me a note, in confidence of course, as I plan to keep highlighting this issue all the way to the local council elections in May.
My email address again is - firstname.lastname@example.org