Edinburgh Council leader Cammy Day could face questions over his union ties – John McLellan
The Labour party’s links with unions are hardly news, but a close association raised a few eyebrows at this week’s city council policy and resources committee. At the start of the meeting the committee convener, Labour group leader Cammy Day, announced he could not take part in a debate about the expansion of the “telemetrics” monitoring system in the council’s vehicle fleet – already installed in 400 vehicles – because his brother is a union official.
How very above board, but SNP councillor Kate Campbell recalled previous discussions of the item at the same committee and asked if Councillor Day had also recused himself on those occasions. No one seemed to know, so there must be short memories all round, because the last time it was discussed was only in January when Councillor Day not only took part in the full discussion, but proposed a motion to delay its implementation, and read out an email from the union which confirmed their concerns.
The delay was duly approved, despite an officer telling the committee that hold-ups could put the council at increased financial and reputational risk and explaining how the existing system had helped track down stolen council vehicles. Perhaps on that occasion Councillor Day had momentarily forgotten he had a brother who was a union official, and what jogged his memory this week was not revealed. With Councillor Mandy Watt in the chair, the system’s expansion was given the go-ahead.
But given the now bitter relationship between SNP and Labour, Councillor Day might be hearing from the standards people.