Labour denies talk of council coalition deal

SNP group leader Kelly Parry and Labour group leader Derek Milligan.
SNP group leader Kelly Parry and Labour group leader Derek Milligan.

The SNP questioned Labour at the recent Midlothian Council meeting on any deals made with the Conservatives to run the local authority.

Labour denied that any coalition deal had been made and it continues to run a minority administration with its seven councillors elected in May’s council elections.

In a written question to leader of the council Derek Milligan (Lab), SNP group leader Cllr Kelly Parry sought clarity on the nature of any agreement between Labour and the Conservatives to allow it to maintain an administration, and which Conservative councillors receive additional allowances as a result of appointments to committees, external bodies or changes to councillors rates of pay “as a result of decisions taken by the administration or the council”.

Cllr Milligan responded: “The reality is there are no deals and there are no hidden deals.

“I simply put forward what I thought was a fair reflection of the workload, not divvying up cash between members as is being presented by Councillor Parry.

“We suggested that the group leaders from the Conservative group and the SNP group would carry quite a considerable bit of the workload for this council. Therefore a senior position was allocated. There was no increase in the chunk of money, as we don’t have the power to do that.”