Fife Council: Two area committee elections end in stalemate

Fife Council’s new minority Labour administration will have to sort out who gets to lead two of its area committees after voting to elect new conveners ended in stalemate.

Tuesday, 31st May 2022, 4:24 pm

All seven local committees have now met for the first time since the May election - but not all the key posts were able to be filled.

Labour took the key posts in Kirkcaldy, while the SNP will lead Glenrothes and south-west Fife.

The Lib Dems gained the top seats in their heartland of North East Fife and City of Dunfermline, but Cowdenbeath and Levenmouth remained deadlocked.

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Ian Cameron (left) is the new convener of Kirkcaldy area committee with Julie MacDougall as his deputy,. Craig Walker (centre) will lead the Glenrothes committee.

The convenership of those committees will now be sent back to a meeting of the full council on June 9.

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Councillor Ian Cameron is the new convener of Kirkcaldy’s area committee, taking over from Neil Crooks who stood down at the last election.

His deputy is the newly elected Julie MacDougall, Burntisland, Kinghorn and western Kirkcaldy.

They both won by 7-5 in a vote, defeating SNP nominees Rod Kavanagh and Carol Lindsay.

Mr Cameron said: “I look forward to working with you all over next five years. We have a big agenda to fulfil.

In the south-west area committee - which covers from Kincardine to Aberdour - the SNP’s David Barratt was the sole nominee for the post of convener.

He said he was “absolutely delighted, and a little surprised” to have been unanimously appointed.

He added: “We have many challenges facing us over the coming years, including the cost of living crisis, delivery of affordable housing and the provision of quality community facilities. I am unashamedly ambitious for south and West Fife and can't wait to get started.”

The vote for deputy ended in a 4-4 tie between Sam Steele (SNP) and Graeme Downie (Lab) and will now be referred to the full council for a decision.

At Glenrothes area committee it was straight forward as Craig Walker became convener, and his SNP colleague Ross Vettraino became depute. There were no other nominations for either post.

But Cowdenbeath and Levenmouth area committee committees remain up in the air.

Both ended in stalemate with 4-4 votes when it came to appointing a convener,.

In Cowdenbeath, Alex Campbell was Labour’s nomination, while Alistair Bain was put forward by the SNP.

In Leven, the committee was split between the SNP’s Ken Caldwell and Labour’s Colin Davidson.

At the City of Dunfermline area committee, the Lib Dems’ City James Calder defeated the SNP’s Jean Hall Muir six votes to five.

The same figures saw Labour’s Gordon Pryde edge out the SNP’s Lynn Ballantyne Wardlaw for the post of deputy.