Anger at council committee meeting as SNP emergency motion is denied

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A row erupted at North Lanarkshire Council’s Infrastructure Committee when the SNP attempted to discuss gritting policy around icy schools.

The SNP Group moved to suspend Standing Orders to allow the matter to be part of the committee agenda.

The move was then defeated 18-14 with Labour and Tory councillors combining.

A two-thirds majority is required to suspend standing orders and allow emergency items to be debated.

Coatbridge South SNP Councillor Tracy Carragher had tried to have the issue raised, following complaints from parents at local schools.

She said: “I wrote to the convener of the committee,Councillor McPake, but he refused to place the matter on the committee agenda. It seems Labour and Tory councillors blocked this simply because it was an SNP suggestion.”

A spokesperson for North Lanarkshire Council said: “Before the Infrastructure Committee on February 7, the convener was asked by another councillor to add a paper on winter gritting to the agenda. The convener did not consider it appropriate and advised the member of his decision.

“The council followed its winter gritting policy, which was unanimously approved by the committee, during the recent period of bad weather and all priority routes were kept open and clear.

“At the end of each winter, the policy is reviewed so the convener decided there was no requirement for a paper to this committee.

“During the committee meeting, a councillor requested that Standing Orders be suspended to allow discussion on this issue and a vote was held. The request was rejected by 18 votes to 14.”