With pressure off after ELC budget-setting on Tuesday, I took a tour of some of the local projects we’ve been funding across the county. Since our Labour opponents in the council and Holyrood both threw their toys so emphatically out of the pram over the last two days, I thought a tour offered a chance to check if people don’t share our pride.
Dunbar’s new primary was a hive of hard-hat activity and the refurbished McArthur’s Stores busy with creels and working fishermen. But Brunt Court’s 88 houses just coming to completion were the most impressive, part because their standard far exceeds government requirements, part because existing ELC tenants jumped at the chance to live there (even at a premium rent) and part because they simply look better than the private homes in adjacent Lochend.
It was the same story across the county—in Macbeth Moir Road or Middleshot Square or even the impressively integrated Balfour’s Square—delighted tenants in excellent houses that many had lost hope of finding. If any were dissatisfied with quality or rent level, I saw absolutely no evidence.
En route, I winessed many completions (Musselburgh stables; new sports pavilions for Longniddry and (again) Middleshot Square), others well underway (the massive John Gray cultural centre; 100 houses at Muirpark) and now still more approved with strong local backing (NB and Musselburgh museums; Ormiston community centre).
Taken altogether, these massive, eight-figure investments in our communities are also a timely shot in the arm for local businesses and employment. Why our naysayer opposition should vote against all this escapes me entirely.