27/02/2020

Labour Group Call for action on air quality


At Dundee City Council's Community Safety and Public Protection Committee on Monday evening there was a report on progress on the Low Emission Zone.  As Dundee Labour's City Development spokesperson I want this policy to work.

The Labour Group welcomed this report.  We have said consistently and say again that we are supportive of the Low Emission Zone Policy but that we want to be kept in the loop about progress.  We want the council to take the people of Dundee with them on this policy.



I also want to make clear that at Monday night's meeting we noted responses to the consultation about the Low Emission Zone and delegated the Executive Directors of Neighbourhood Services and City Development to further work to prepare for a final report on the design and scope of the Dundee LEZ.



I want to make clear that nothing that we said or did on Monday evening means that we have agreed to the design or scope of the Dundee LEZ.



The Labour Group look forward to the report on the final design and scope of the LEZ for Dundee and will scrutinise it fully when it is brought forward.



Prior to that report we expect the other issues around this which form part of Dundee City Council’s policy around air quality. 



At a meeting of this committee on 3rd June 2019 we agreed to an amendment which the Labour Group put forward that amendment called for a report on what is being done to mitigate poor air quality at a number of locations across the city, including Lochee Road.  I see no evidence of that report.  I remain concerned about the lack of such a report.



It remitted the Executive Directors to bring forward a report on how local businesses were being prepared for the implementation of LEZ.  I am concerned that there may be unintended consequences of changes we need be aware of those and mitigate them and help businesses especially small local businesses deal with any decisions that we make around LEZ.



Lastly, whilst there was a report later on Monday's committee  which was intended to deal with our ask for a report along with NHS Tayside on actions which could be taken to mitigate the problems caused by poor air quality.  That report on Monday did not meet our expectations, we were looking for an action plan and that is not what we have got.

The Labour Group want to make clear our wish to improve air quality right across the city.  We are not fussed as to whether this is within the Low Emission Zone or not.  The Low Emission Zone seems destined to be within a relatively small area but it must not be the only show in town with regard to air quality.



Convener, we want to improve air quality we want the LEZ to be a success.  I hope that officers and yourself have heard what we have to say and that you will work accordingly before any more reports are brought back to this committee.

25/02/2020

Let the council know your views on changes to Harris Academy and its feeder primary feeder primary schools

Recently Dundee City Council decided to consult on changes to a variety of schools across the city.  In the West End the main issues are around Harris Academy and its associated feeder primary schools.

The headline move is that the council plans to exclude pupils from Invergowrie Primary from the Harris Academy catchment area.  The Labour Group voted against these plans on the basis that there was no overall educational strategic vision underpinning these proposals.

We were out voted and as a result there is now a consultation on these proposals.  You can read the proposals here. The consultation is now open and will go on until 27 March.  I would encourage anyone who has a view on these proposals to let the council know.

There are also two evening meetings taking place one taking place on 26 February starting at 6pm with  a public viewing of proposals and a drop-in session at 6pm and a formal presentation at 7pm with a Question and Answer session.  A similar meeting will take place on 16 March at the same times, both meetings take place in Harris Academy.