FOI: Cllr Adam McVey, Derek MacKay MSP and the meetings that did not happen.

empty-small-meeting-room-with-table-and-chairs-in-modern-building_v1hvu0zge__f0000

An image of Cllr Adam McVey & Derek MacKay MSP not meeting.

Since the day he became Council Leader Adam McVey has been assuring the city that he’s been holding regular meetings with Derek MacKay to demand fair funding for our Capital (quotes below).

Now, based on the FOI detailed below, we find that Edinburgh is facing the worst financial settlement in living memory and that these meetings appear to have been a figment of his imagination. There was only one formal meeting between McVey and MacKay in the whole of 2018.

I feel let down, but I expect many people in Edinburgh will find these revelations simply incredible.

 

Adam McVey’s Comments in Full Council

22nd Nov 18 – “I can assure any Labour Councillors who think that standing outside the Scottish Parliament with a sandwich board is better than being in the room meeting the Minister, in my experience that is not the case.”

22 Nov 18 (at 1:14:30) – “I did meet the Cabinet for Secretary for Finance about two weeks ago”

25th Oct 18 (at 2:27:00) – “I stand behind Gail Macgregor [COSLA] in her negotiations with Derek MacKay and I echo them as much as I can in my meetings with Ministers”.

20th Sept 18 (at 1:00:18) – “I have had numerous conversions with the Cabinet for Secretary for Finance throughout my time as leader. I met him as recently as last week, I think I actually met him twice in one day”

14th Dec 17 (at 1:27:15) – “I think I have engagements with Derek MacKay and other Scottish Government Ministers every few days on various topics. I have very robust dialogue with the Scottish Government. ”

23 Nov 17 (at 1:08:00) –  “I make regular representations to the Scottish Government either by meeting Derek MacKay, by phone or occasional text hounding him about something. In terms of the representations I have made already, I don’t think I have had an engagement with Derek MacKay where I have not mentioned the Transient Visitor Levy.”

26th Oct 17 (at 0:54:00) – “I have made a number of representations [to the Scottish Government]”

 

FOI Request

Please provide details of the following:

  1. Meetings  (if any) between the Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Economy and Fair Work and Councillor Adam McVey (City of Edinburgh Council) between May 2017 and December 2018: Dates, Agenda, Venue and Attendance.
  2. Meetings  (if any) between the Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Economy and Fair Work and Councillor Alasdair Rankin (City of Edinburgh Council) between May 2017 and December 2018: Dates, Agenda, Venue and Attendance.
  3. Meetings  (if any) between the Minister for Local Government, Housing and Planning and Councillor Adam McVey (City of Edinburgh Council) between May 2017 and December 2018: Dates, Agenda, Venue and Attendance.
  4. Meetings  (if any) between the Minister for Local Government, Housing and Planning and Councillor Alasdair Rankin (City of Edinburgh Council) between May 2017 and December 2018: Dates, Agenda, Venue and Attendance.
  5. Meetings  (if any) between the Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Local Government and Councillor Adam McVey (City of Edinburgh Council) between May 2017 and December 2018: Dates, Agenda, Venue and Attendance.
  6. Meetings  (if any) between the Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Local Government and Councillor Alasdair Rankin(City of Edinburgh Council) between May 2017 and December 2018: Dates, Agenda, Venue and Attendance

 

FOI Response:

We hold information for two meetings for Q1.

A meeting took place on 29th August 2017 in St Andrews House. There was no formal agenda for this meeting and no record of attendees other than Cabinet Secretary and Councillor Adam McVey. The meeting was part of a series of stakeholder engagements that the Cabinet Secretary undertakes where he meets with councils to discuss a range of finance issues facing local government

A meeting took place on 11 September 2018. There was no formal agenda for this meeting. The meeting took place in Parliament and the attendees were the Cabinet Secretary, Councillor Adam McVey, and Andrew Kerr CEO Edinburgh Council. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss economic development issues relevant to Edinburgh.

We hold information for one meeting for Q3.

A meeting on the 22 August 2018. With the Annex A reflecting this agenda. The agenda, venue and attendees for that meeting is attached as Annex A.

 

Annex A

  1. Business plan and priorities for the new administration
  • The council recently published (15 August) their new corporate plan setting out the Council’s priorities for 2017-2022.
  1. National Review of Planning and Local Development Plan
  • The Planning Review is clear that housing delivery and stronger planning for infrastructure are key priorities for this Government.
  • Outstanding planning issues related to the Local Development Plan
  1. Housing and homelessness
  • The council has identified significant pressures related to welfare reform
  1. New working practices, innovation and collaboration
  • Discuss what opportunities exist for introducing new ways of working and how we can introduce more innovation into designing and delivering services.
  • Explore what barriers may exist and how they can be overcome.
  1. Locality Improvement Plans
  • Explore council’s plans to set up locality committees
  • Work on community empowerment

 

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