Edinburgh Tory councillor to quit next year citing frustration with SNP-Labour administration
An Edinburgh Tory councillor who fought a key target seat in May's Holyrood elections is to quit frontline politics, citing frustration at trying to deal with the SNP-Labour administration as one of his reasons.
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Scott Douglas, who was elected as councillor for Corstorphine/Murrayfield in 2017 and was chosen as Tory candidate for Edinburgh Central when Ruth Davidson stood down as an MSP, said he had decided not to stand again at next year's council elections.
He said: “I’ve absolutely loved representing the people of Murrayfield and Corstorphine, and it’s been great to be able to help so many local residents over the past five years.
“However I’ve taken the decision not stand for re-election this May, as sadly I’ve found it difficult to dedicate time to my role as councillor while holding a full-time job.
“I’ve also found it increasingly frustrating dealing with administration councillors who think they know better than the people and communities they are elected to represent.
“I have no doubt that this attitude will be punished by voters at the upcoming election, as they look to elect hard-working representatives who listen rather than dictate.”
Councillor Douglas said it was “mind-numbingly irritating” trying to deal with the administration.
He claimed the results of a consultation on controlled parking zones for parts of the city, including Corstorphine, Saughtonhall, Roseburn and Murrayfield in his ward, had been ignored.
"They did a survey asking people for their views and the vast majority came back negative. At the last minute they agreed to postpone it but they still want to consider introducing it next year – they're just ignoring people on it. I got 200 emails from people who were furious about it.
"And it's the same with the Spaces for People programme – I’ve been dealing with scheme on Queensferry Road, where there are residents who can’t park in their driveways at the moment and get beeped at and abuse shouted at them every time they try and reverse in.
"The council just don't want to listen – they're just going down their path, they think they know better than the local residents, so they're just pushing ahead with it regardless.
“It becomes frustrating after a while trying to deal with an administration who just don’t want to listen.”
He said he would continue to be active in the party, but would “take a back seat for a bit”.
“I don't think elected politics is on the agenda in the near future.”
The Conservatives will now have to select a new candidate to try to retain Cllr Douglas’s seat at the council elections in May.
He said: “I want to thank all of those who have been so supportive of me in my role over the past few years.
“Obviously I’ll still be working flat-out between now and May for local residents and I'll be campaigning to make sure we get someone re-elected in Corstorphine/Murrayfield.”
Cllr Douglas worked in the communications department of a law firm, then as head of broadcast and online media for the Scottish Conservatives before taking up his current job as head of PR and public affairs at one of Scotland’s largest colleges.
At the election in May, he finished second in Edinburgh Central behind the SNP’s Angus Robertson who had a 4,732 majority.