Letters: SNP must take its share of blame for tram derailment

Martin Hannan (Tram vote was derailed by fear, News, March 6) is absolutely right in claiming that Edinburgh City Council was probably fearful of yet another rejection by residents, had it put the tram project out to a vote.

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 10th March 2012, 12:00 pm

Residents have become utterly disillusioned with the incompetence of the council on any planning matters concerning traffic flow.

The failure of the traffic management scheme, which wasted millions, and was quickly followed by the heavy defeat for the ill-conceived congestion charge proposals, has led the council to avoid consultation and it has become secretive and underhand.

However, Martin Hannan is totally wrong to claim that his party, the SNP, has maintained a position of opposing the tram project.

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The SNP government in fact failed to control the tram project through Transport Scotland when it should have done so, when it was absolutely clear that reckless expenditure was being incurred.

As Mr Hannan says, “the public trusted all the politicians to fix it, but they did not do so”.

So it is a legacy that rests on the shoulders of the SNP politicians at national and local level, just as much as it does with the other parties.

Allan Alstead, Moray Place, Edinburgh

Put something on youngsters’ CVs

Instead of councils paying their staff a day’s holiday pay plus a day’s wages for working in the polling stations for May’s elections, they should employ unemployed young people. After all, what previous experience does anyone need to hand out ballot papers and score off names and addresses?

B Denholm, March Street, Peebles

Council should buy back homes

I WRITE regarding plans for the council to be allowed to let private empty homes (News, February 29). This is fine if the property is mortgage-free, otherwise lenders will probably not agree to this and stipulate no DSS or asylum seekers.

The answer is for the council to buy back a lot of these houses. They were quick enough to sell them off in the first place.

Sheila Gray, Edinburgh

Meet the costs of cyclists’ safety

WHILST I am genuinely sorry that a cyclist has lost his life on an Edinburgh road, I have to question the need for a cycle safety summit (News, March 6).

As a driver I ask, what more can be done to make the roads safer for cyclists and what do cycle lobby groups want?

If cyclists want more dedicated lanes or routes then it is about time they paid some money towards them.

Alastair Macintyre, Webster Place, Rosyth