It was great to attend the latest Argyll Islands Strategic group meeting in Kilmory today where I spoke directly to Scottish Government officials about the many important and pressing issues in my council ward.
These matters included infrastructure and transport links that we rely on, all the more so on our Islands, where every cancelled or delayed ferry sailing can have a severe and detrimental impact to our local economies.
I once again stated the huge importance of having infrastructure to keep up with our economic growth. I stated that my constituents not being able to book a ferry on and off Islay during the busiest months for lack of ferry space is unacceptable and must change.
The planned zero land fill policy of the Scottish Government is of particular concern as it will lead to yet more ferry capacity being taken up with land fill. This will not only defeat the whole purpose of the act which is to reduce landfill but it will also cost the Scottish economy a fortune as we pay other parts of the U.K to take our rubbish. With the terrific economic growth being achieved on our Islands leading to more and more heavy freight on our ferries the last thing we need is yet more ferry space being taken up by lorries full of land fill.
It was good to get the opportunity to speak up about rural fuel poverty in my council ward. With prices being higher for fuel at the pumps and heating fuel costs having to include the cost of being ferried over to our Islands some are having their finances stretched to near breaking point.
At a meeting later that day with the David MacBrayne Ltd (DML) Board in Port Askaig, I once again had the opportunity to discuss the challenges facing our ferry network back on Islay
I will continue to do all that I can to ensure my constituent's concerns on infrastructure, ferries, digital black spots and rural fuel property are addressed.
Cllr Alastair Redman