Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Clutching at straws on trams fiasco

Had evidence session for Public Audit committee today on the fiasco that is the Trams!! The brass neck of the Labour and Tory parties was breathtaking. They voted FOR it. The SNP voted AGAINST it at both council and parliament level. But we lost and it went ahead albeit with a cap on spending of £500 million.

Today, instead of admitting they were wrong and should never have voted this complex expensive project through, some of them tried to blame the SNP councillors in Edinburgh and others tried to blame the SNP government. Apparently the fact that the 12 SNP councillors on a council of 58 in total, are opposed to the trams, has somehow led to the dispute between TIE and the private contractors?! Not according to our witnesses who said it made "no material difference".

And the Scottish Government who voted AGAINST it in the first place? Well, it may be an Edinburgh City Council owned event and we know that normally that would mean that the council would manage it but the opposition have decided that Transport Scotland should have broken with common practice and run it for them. And because they (a Scottish Govt agency) didn't, it ended up like this.

Except, I asked the witnesses if Transport Scotland had an open door or a shut door policy and guess what they said? Yes, TS very helpful and always there when advice needed.

Must be terrible having no-one to blame, particularly when it's your default position!

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