Council should step in if Greenlight goes out of business, says McBride
By Bill Heaney
If recycling company Greenlight stops trading, then West Dunbartonshire Council should step in with a rescue plan.
Councillor David McBride (Labour) has tabled a motion to this effect for the full monthly meeting in Clydebank next Wednesday.
Such is the level of public interest in these meetings – and in the contentious issues constantly being raised – that contingency plans are being put in place to convene in the main hall in order that members of the public can be accommodated in the meeting, which is due to begin at 6pm.
A number of people were turned away from last month’s meeting at the newly-refurbished Burgh Hall in Dumbarton.
One angry punter said: “They spent £15 million on the Burgh Hall only to find it’s not fit for the main purpose for which it’s there – to house the public meetings of its most important committee, which is the full council itself.
“Now, they’re scrambling to make Clydebank Town Hall, which also cost millions of pounds to do up, fit for purpose to hold council meetings.
“Maybe their planners anticipated only a few members of the public would dream of going to a council meeting.
“I think they are about to receive a rude awakening.”
Clydebank Town Hall, which also houses a museum and café, is currently losing in the region of £300,000 a year.
There are reports that Greenlight have delayed their liquidation plans in anticipation that their financial woes may soon be resolved.
However, this seems unlikely since the amount owed to the Taxman is in the region of £300,000.
Cllr McBride’s motion states: “This Council is disappointed to learn that Greenlight Environmental has applied for voluntary administration following its failure to honour its payments to HMRC.
“Council notes that Greenlight Environmental employs 109 staff and provides a range of services to West Dunbartonshire residents.
“The services provided to our citizens are valued at £1.4m per year and include our care of garden scheme and a variety of recycling and environmental maintenance and improvements.
“This Council calls on the Chief Executive in consultation with the other Councils to work towards a solution that protects jobs and services across Greenlight Environmental area of operation.
“Ideally the aim should be to ensure that Greenlight Environmental continues to trade in some form but in the event that this is not feasible, then the Council should explore the option of taking the services and jobs in house within the Council.”
Meanwhile, the SNP leader Jonathan McColl refuses to explain or apologise or even to address the public through the pages of The Democrat.