Irresponsible view ?
Dovesdale court case begins
By Boss Thomson,
Carluke & Lanark Gazette, 27/10/11, article re-published by Dovesdale
to main Stonehouse/Dovesdale page)
THE Judicial Review into the Dovesdale Incinerator has started at the Court of Session in Edinburgh.
On Friday members from Dovesdale Incinerator Action Group put their case forward against the planning application - agreed by South Lanarkshire councillors in February.
The decision is now in the hands of the judge with campaigners estimating it could take four to six weeks.
The news comes as Lib Dem MSP Jim Hume launched a scathing attack on Clydesdale MSP Aileen Campbell over her alleged silence on the matter since her ministerial appointment.
The South of Scotland MSP hit out during a debate in the Scottish Parliament on waste management.
MSPs were prevented from referring directly to the Dovesdale Incinerator during the debate, as the matter is the subject of judicial review proceedings.
Mr Hume said: "Thousands of people have objected to this development and its handling by South Lanarkshire Council has been under question since it was approved.
"Frankly, local planning policies are absolutely pointless if councils ignore them and then go on to approve developments like Dovesdale on greenbelt land.
"The general issue of incineration was discussed during the debate.
"It was therefore very frustrating that MSPs were prevented from talking directly about Dovesdale, but it was important to respect the legal position.
"More frustrating however is that the local MSP for Clydesdale actively opposed Dovesdale from the start but has been conspicuously silent since May after being appointed Local Government and Planning Minister.
"Indeed, Ms Campbell will recall her 'disappointment' and 'concern' in February following the application's success and her allegation that the council had 'ridden roughshod' over their own policies. MSPs have a duty to their constituents and simply cannot pick and choose when they wish to be active on certain issues.
"The people of Clydesdale deserve better and Aileen Campbell should perhaps consider what is more important - her constituents or the ministerial Volvo."
In response Aileen said: "As all MSPs are aware, the Dovesdale application is subject to judicial review. Since there is an ongoing legal process I am unable to comment on the case.
"Given that legal process, it is irresponsible for politicians to raise this case, at this time, in this way. Right now letting that process take its course is the responsible thing to do for my constituents in Clydesdale.
"I will, however, take the opportunity to emphasise my consistency on this issue as a regional MSP for South Scotland and now as constituency MSP for Clydesdale.
"I have always made it clear that due planning process dictated that the Government never had any locus to intervene in this case and my appointment as Planning Minister does not change that fact.
"My commitment to people in Clydesdale as constituency MSP is unshakeable. I will continue to build on my track-record of standing up for this area and all who live here.
"I refuse to rise to this political provocation which could jeopardise the expensive legal action paid for by local opponents of Dovesdale."
By Boss Thomson
Carluke & Lanark Gazette