Victory for Democracy as Labour get Garnock Site Selection Delayed
The Labour Group on North Ayrshire Council is claiming a victory for local democracy after it forced the SNP Administration to delay the enforcement of a controversial proposal to site the new Garnock Campus at Longbar. The delay will allow time for consultation with Garnock Valley parents.
At the Council meeting of 19th September the decision on a proposal to site
the school Campus at Longbar was deferred until the next council meeting in
November. Speaking at the Council debate Garnock Valley Labour Councillor John Bell
said; "The location of a development like this is a major decision which will have a huge impact on Kilbirnie and Beith. The SNP leadership has tried to force this through without allowing parents and the community time to consider the change of site. It's sharp practice by the SNP to officially tell the community only 6 days before the decision was to be made and giving them no opportunity to present their case to councillors. The decision is wrong and the process is flawed."
"Because of concerns raised by Garnock Valley residents about the unsuitability of the Longbar site at the statutory consultation the new Garnock Campus was planned to go to a site near Stoneyholm Road. For some reason the SNP have changed that and want to put it in exactly the wrong place. "Given that they had no time to respond, it is remarkable that locals have organised a 500 signature petition which I have delivered to the council Chief Executive."
"Four possible sites had been involved in the original consultation. Locals were strongly in favour of sites on Largs Rd and Stoneyolm Road. If these sites were chosen it would mean most of the schools users, the 970 nursery primary and secondary pupils from Kilbirnie, would be within reasonable
walking distances. It also means that secondary pupils from Beith and Dalry would continue to
be eligible for free school transport."
A majority of councillors supported a motion to defer the decision in order to allow consultation with parents and to give an opportunity for the petioners to present their case to the Councils Scrutiny and Petitions