May 16 2012 EXCLUSIVE by Joe McGuire
Glasgow City Chambers picture gallery Image 9
MORE than a third of Glasgow’s councillors are new to the job as they take their seats at the first full session of the new administration tomorrow.
Thirty-three of the 79 members elected earlier this month are first-timers. Labour have 18 and the SNP 13. Green councillors Martin Bartos and Liam Hainey makes up the numbers.
Labour were returned to a majority administration after seeing off a strong challenge from the SNP, who had hoped to end decades of socialist rule at the city chambers.
New Labour councillor Emma Gillan, representing Newlands/Auldburn, said she couldn’t wait to get to get to grips with the job.
The Cathcart resident said: “I’m very much looking forward to tomorrow and the chance to get to know my colleagues more closely.
“We’ve been elected to serve and, though this meeting should be mostly formalities, I can’t wait until we’re debating policy.
“I’ve already been at work with local community groups and residents.”
May 3’s vote also saw the election of former councillor Frank McAveety in Shettleston, the area he had represented as an MSP.
Labour said during the campaign that they would engage more with opposition parties if elected.
New councillor Mhairi Hunter, representing the SNP in Southside Central, said: “I’m looking forward to attending my first council meeting on Thursday.
“Labour promised during the election to be more open and consensual in the way they run the council.
“We’ll find out on Thursday if they meant that.
“I certainly hope there can be a more constructive and consensual approach to moving Glasgow forward that allows all parties to be involved in decision-making.”
Labour’s majority means the result of the election to determine the Lord Provost and a deputy is believed to be a foregone conclusion.
Linn ward’s Sadie Docherty is expected to be chosen as LP with North East’s Gerald Leonard as her number two.
The election of new bailies – councillors who assist the Lord Provost in civic engagements – will also take place.
Councillors have already signed declarations with the executive director of public services.