Lothian politicians clash as Edinburgh City Council slammed over Spaces for People and city upkeep
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Frustrated Conservative MSP Miles Briggs has accused the council of failing to meet its responsibility of looking after the Capital.
He said the city has been left “in a mess” by the council with more roadworks than ever and weeds spreading across the city.
Uneven paving stones and untended weeds across the Capital are Mr Briggs' main concerns. He noted a noticeable increase of residents contacting his office to highlight the growing problem.
Mr Briggs said: “The pavements around Edinburgh are in a terrible state with weeds everywhere and uneven paving slabs wherever you walk.
“Edinburgh is a beautiful city, but Labour and SNP councillors who run the council, are failing in their duty to preserve the city for local residents and people who are visiting.
“We are in need of a change to who runs the council, to reverse the damage done by the current administration and clean up the city.
“The council has left the Capital looking like something out of the film The Day of the Triffids.”
The MSP went on to criticise the rollout of the Spaces for People scheme which he has previously described as a “total dog’s breakfast”.
Council officials refute these claims
Council officials have shut down Mr Briggs’ comments and accused him of “already being on the campaign trail”.
SNP councillor Lesley Macinnes said that the MSP's comments fail to take into account the consistent efforts put into managing the city during the pandemic.
Councillor Macinnes said: “Well, it would appear that Mr Briggs is already on the election campaign trail given his rather unsubtle political comments. It would also appear that he does not wish to recognise the consistent efforts put into managing this beautiful city by council staff in the face of considerable challenges.
“Our grounds maintenance and street cleansing teams work, for example, extremely hard to tend to the city’s parks and keep our streets clear of weeds. However, the unprecedented effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on staffing levels across the country is no secret, and has impacted on these teams too. While they are working at a reduced capacity I would like to thank residents for their patience as our colleagues make every effort to get round the city as quickly as possible.
“I would question Miles Briggs’s suggestion we are carrying out ‘more roadworks than ever’ – as a living, breathing city, it’s necessary that utilities companies access our roads to carry out essential repairs, while at the same time our programme of capital projects will improve our streets for all road users. This, alongside our Spaces for People schemes, is about creating a better environment for all those who live and visit the Capital. While I appreciate that his intention appears to be simply to create a particular impression, I would be happy to provide him with answers if he wishes to raise any specific concerns with me."