Letters: Forget payouts for cyclists, use money to fix the roads

Picture: Ian Rutherford

Picture: Ian Rutherford

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Have your say

I READ your article about cyclists claiming damages for being stuck in the new tram lines (News, November 22).

Are they all numpties? Do they cycle over broken glass? No. Do they cycle over nails and screws which may have fallen on the road? I don’t think so.

So why on Earth would they ride over the tram lines? I am not in favour of the new tram system, nor am I a supporter of the present council, but I think this is taking things a bit too far, and does not do the intelligence of cyclists any favours.

Save the proposed payouts and spend the money on the road repairs so desperately needed. Just a thought. When I had to get a new coil spring fitted to my car last week, I should have put a claim into the council because of the state of the roads.

Steve Brown, The Paddockholm, Edinburgh

Being in EU gives us a strong voice

RECENTLY the Labour Party voted with 53 Tory sceptics against David Cameron’s call for a rise in the EU budget. This was subsequently defeated by the “No” vote of the joint Labour and Tory sceptics who favoured a reduction in the EU budget.

As far as Labour was concerned this was not an opportunist vote as some will think. It was a vote to keep our EU membership intact. Why should other European countries not be given the opportunity to vote on the European budget? After all, they are suffering the effects of austerity too. The EU is important because it gives us a strong voice to be heard all over the world, especially by the world’s largest economies, America and China.

Chas Dennis, Niddrie Marischal Road, Edinburgh

Independent but not in control

I AM surprised at Alex Orr’s claim an “independent” Scotland would control the levers of power and would thus be able to fully stimulate the economy (Letters, November 21).

On separation the currency in Scotland would initially be Sterling, which is controlled from London by the Bank of England. If it changed then that would be because Scotland had adopted the euro, which is controlled by the European Central Bank in Frankfurt.

The position of Scotland would be like that of Greece or Ireland, which do not have their own currencies, rather than that of Norway, which does.

Interest rates would be set to suit the needs of the principal economy within the currency zone, which would be England for the pound or Germany for the euro.

The exchange rate would be one that reflected the economic situation in the main economy of the currency area, rather than Scotland’s own needs.

Also, Scotland would not have the option of quantitative easing, but when it ran a deficit would have to borrow all the money it needed. The UK has been able to maintain public spending by running a large deficit precisely because we have our own currency.

It is a funny sort of independence that the SNP is trying to sell to us – one where the Scottish government would not control the levers of economic power!

Otto Inglis, Inveralmond Grove, Edinburgh

Veterans viewers can watch TV free

With budgeting a priority in winter, I am writing to remind readers that anyone aged 75 or over is eligible for a free TV Licence for their main address.

There are currently more than 24,500 free TV Licences in force in Edinburgh. With more than 40,000 people in Scotland due to turn 75 this year, TV Licensing and Age Scotland are reminding older TV Licence holders in Edinburgh they will be entitled to a free TV Licence on their 75th birthday.

Eligible people can register online at www.tvlicensing.co.uk/over75 or by calling 0300 790 6073. The free licence will cover all the equipment in the property, meaning family or carers living in the same home could also benefit.

Anyone aged 74 or over can begin planning for the concession immediately by applying for a short-term licence which will last between one and 11 months.

Applying for a free licence is simple and, once you have one, TV Licensing will send a new licence once every three years, cutting down on paperwork.

Customers with a free TV Licence are reminded to contact TV Licensing if there is a change to their name, address or telephone details.

Fergus Reid, TV Licensing Scotland