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tv tanned

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Everything posted by tv tanned

  1. Nah, I have just been ludicrously busy with election campaigning and now being a dad of two instead of a dad of one! The UTG issue was 'robust' debate, but if you can't handle it then you probably shouldn't be in politics! Thanks all for the good wishes! I am enjoying it all so far, and hope it will continue. I probably won't be on here much but feel free to give me a shout if I can help with anything. Mark
  2. All Sorry for not being on here to defend what you all see as the indefensible, or at least try and put my points across. I have been busy with council work, family life and other stuff. If folk wish to PM me to discuss anything, or email me at the council, then feel free, but I think the time has come for me to bow out of this thread. I came in here to respond to a request to reveal how I voted and why, I have done that, so I best bow out and allow you all to get on with things. In response to an earlier query around where to complain about us councillors. The place to go would be here: Standards Commission for Scotland - Integrity in Public Life
  3. Hi. Sorry for not being around, busy with other casework etc. Basically, 5 amendments were put forward, and they were taken in the order that they were received by officials. Each amendment was voted against the one preceding it, with the successful amendment going forward. So amendment 5v4, 5v3, 3v2, 2v1. Because the amendment at no cost was the first one put forward, it was the last amendment to be voted on.
  4. It was a former old people's home. There are some amenity cottages to the rear of the property, but a large number of measures to address concerns were agreed by Housing & Environment Committee. It was intended to be used for 2 years so that a long term facility could be built on the former Victoria House site. There were 129 objections, but no objections or observations from Grampian Police.
  5. sorry if I appear smug, I am nothing of the sort
  6. I am officially excited about this, to the extent that it is now marked in the diary.
  7. OK, that was the other point. In terms of "slavishly" following. Over the course of the last 18 months I've met with the people from all sides of the argument, and have asked all of them some fairly probing questions. So I haven't just sat back and waited for the opportunity to vote. Having questioned all sides one thing was clear to me, the only thing that is motivating people is a genuine desire to do the best for Aberdeen. They just happen to all hold different visions of what that may be. In terms of your hopes, we'll see what happens in 2012, you might get your wish. In all seriousness, it costs no money whatsoever to stand, so if folk on here feel genuinely that change is needed then they should put themselves onto the ballot papers
  8. I was informed at lunchtime today that the Licensing Committee voted by 9-6 to reject the HMO License application for Aberdon House to be used as a temporary unit for homeless people. This means that the Council is now in a really precarious position when it comes to offering shelter for the homeless, and probably means some folk will be left out on the streets because there will be nowhere else for them to go. I thought folk on here might be interested.
  9. I have been asking to get the definitive position on the councillors having to declare their interest and leave. I understand that they were in the position where they would have had to declare their interest, but could have remained, until the letter at the eleventh hour from Lindsay Gordon which suggested Peacock would be in a position of being unable to trade if the vote went a certain way. I understand that, due to Companies Law, and the present code of conduct for councillors (which is under review) that the councillors in question could have severely compromised themselves if they had remained and voted on a 'life or death' issue. At the end of the day, the decision was theirs, no councillor is ever forced to remove themselves, they make the decision based on the advice they receive. Once I have something more definitive I will post it up. I made mention in my speech how regrettable it was that they were not allowed to participate, I probably wouldn't have agreed with them, but they should have been involved. I totally uinderstand why Peacock felt the need to put out the letter that they did, but it had the unintended consequence of compromising three councillors who may have been sympathetic to their cause. With regard to John Stewart's position on ACSEF, I understand that his position was not one which was pecuniary (i.e - as ACSEF is not a company it does not carry the same burden on appointees) and there were also two members of the Peacock Project Board who remained in the debate and participated accordingly. In any case I have asked for the clarification on this too so that I can post it up here. With respect of the voting. The first vote was not the one which led to a casting vote. We had 5 amendments put forward and they were taken one against the other until the motion was put against the successful amendment. So, in order they went: Boulton v K West - I voted Boulton, which was successful. Boulton v Cassie - I voted Boulton, Cassie was successful Cassie v Crockett - I abstained, Crockett was successful Crockett v Farquharson - I abstained, Farquharson successful on casting vote. In retrospect, I maybe should have voted once Marie Boulton's amendment fell. However, I had stated my support for CSP, so I backed her amendment as it included that option. I also genuinely had no idea what the voting split would be, as there had been a very open debate and nobody knew where the votes would go on the amendments. Finally, regarding the mention of backhanders and corruption. I am sorry, but that is bang out of order. Just because I voted a way you disagree with does not mean I and the others who voted that way are in some way on the take, and frankly I expect slightly better from some of the folk on here.
  10. Yup, absolutely understand, but at the end of the day it is not for me to disclose what folk are saying, it is as frustrating for me as for anyone that the public are not being given the complete picture, but that is for the folk who are involved in discussions to deal with, not me. Got to turn in now, my son will be waking me up in about four and a half hours, so I better at least get something which could be interpreted as sleep.
  11. Trust me, I've been in this gig long enough now to realise that pity is an emotion that nobody reserves for politicians. Folk have every right to be annoyed, and given I had a large number of emails supportive of the square, and a large number opposed to both the square and Peacock, there would have been folk annoyed with whatever I decided.
  12. Yes, I still hold out hope that there is potential for a compromise, because things have been said privately (but not publicly) which give an indication. I don't understand why some of the things which I have been told by Peacock have not been said publicly, but if they don't want to make public statements then that's their decision. What it means, of course, is that people read what is printed, read what I am saying, and automatically think "bullshit" and for me that has been a problem throughout.
  13. Like all good politicians, and most bad ones, I realised I was a bit rash and changed my mind, so feel free to hit me with both barrels. I can't guarantee I will be on here at all times to reply to everything, I have constituency work to be getting on with, but I will stick it out until you all get sick of me and tell me to sling it.
  14. Oh, and since I've been asked about the economic benefit thing, it isn't necessarily the fact that the square will be there, it is the fact that the raising of the level will allow for much more fluency in the city centre, a fluency that, frankly, has been disrupted and destroyed in some respects by the short termism I referred to earlier, but also has been prevented and precluded by the landscape as it presently exists. I believe this will greatly assist the businesses which currently exist to attract more trade as folk will find it easier to go from one area to another, but it will also allow for folk visiting the city to have a much more pleasant experience on arrival and might attract more folk here. Try getting off at the bus or train station and walking into town, usually involves a ridiculous detour rather than a pleasant and speedy connection. Of course, I cannot absolutely prove that the economic benefit will arrive and say here's how much money de da de da de da, but that is the same of any proposal that is ever put forward.
  15. Maybe I was a bit hasty, I just felt like the tone and tamber of the discussion, which I had been looking at, seemed to suggest that anyone who supported something beyond either - (a) doing nothing with the gardens and leaving as is or (b) the Peacock plans - and I never said they wouldn't go ahead, if you look at what I said in my earlier post, I wouldn't have been unhappy if they had, I had a preference towards something different, that doesn't mean I was opposed to the alternative - would be run out of town, and the fact I actually had a vote on it probably meant not being run out of town, but nailed to a cross, set on fire and placed in the Castlegate as a warning to others. If this is the only issue on which people will vote at next local elections then fair doos, I like to think that I have done a number of things within my local patch which have helped folk, but I guess the proof of the pudding will come in a couple of years. I will retract my, admittedly rash, PM which I sent to Neil. How about that, a politician performing a u-turn...
  16. Yes I can confirm that I do. I have never considered UTG to be the green utopia that many people seem to believe it to be. I have spent time there, and the grass area is starved of sunlight for large amounts of time, the trees (which were initially planted to prevent large sections of the gardens from sliding into the Denburn valley|) have in many cases become unwieldy, and a number have grown without being planned. The balustrades are getting to the stage of being dangerously unsafe, and whatever option was selected there would have been a need for expenditure in this area. I simply disagree with the argument that, somehow, big business is profiteering. There is no plan for retail development within the proposals, and the revised vision post-consultation is for at least 2.5 acres of greenspace. The topography of the area rules out any prospect of a flat square. The fact that the site has always had the provision of an arts centre is, for me, a further plus. I am afraid that the comments earlier on in the thread which insinuated that the Peacock development was ready to cut turf were not accurate. Peacock, even if they had been given the go-ahead, had still to find 4.3million (the conditions which the council were placing on the progression of the scheme to design competition stated that Peacock should receive 8.2million from the development) and there was still a need to negotiate a lease for the site and provide a business plan. Planning permission can be obtained by anybody for any site anywhere. As I said, I am not intrinsically or diametrically opposed to Peacock, or indeed the concept of a contemporary arts centre, but I felt on balance that there was a bigger opportunity for economic development presented by taking the concept of the city square (which, frankly, is a misleading title as far as I am concerned because it won't be a flat square, but there's been plenty of mistakes made which, with hindisight, ought to have been handled differently) to the next stage. This is not, by any stretch of the imagination, the last step in the process, and it may well be that the design comp fails to produce anything, but in my opinion to say no to the project at the concept stage would have been an error. I abhor the notion that politics and politicians should always be driven by short-termism on the basis that if you take an unpopular decision which you perceive to have long term benefits you will be turfed out, so instead you take a decision which benefits you personally or politically in the short term, but does nothing to benefit the city in the long term. The reason the city has found itself in so much difficulty in recent times is because there has been too much short-termism and not enough long term planning. So, if folk on here get there wish, and I end up on the dole queue in 2012, then so be it, that's democracy. I could not, however, in all honesty say that I would have been voting for the benefit of the city if I had taken a decision which would have been designed to benefit me politically in the short term. Them's the breaks. I mailed Neil after reading some of the remarks on here to ask for my account to be deleted. I thought that I could continue to have interests and pursuits outside of the council but it's fairly clear that my vote on this will pretty much signal that I'm no longer welcome on here, so I think it's better if I exit stage left and let y'all get on with things.
  17. I voted to go to the design comp. I'm not anti-Peacock, and if the vote had gone the other way I would not have been distraught, in fact I would have worked to help deliver it. I took the decision that the CSP proposals were more likely to deliver long term benefit to the region. However, I realise nobody will care, so I will take my leave of this place so you can all hurl abuse at me to your hearts content.
  18. Glad I avoided it then! I went off Spooks quite early. The "Lisa Faulkner/deep fat fryer' incident put me off, not from a squeamish perspective, just a 'FFS' perspective! I look at The Wire, and think to myself that anyone over this side of the pond trying to do something similar would probably end up turning out something like Shameless...
  19. Well, the original source was a song title, but when you get paid as badly as I do and have a mortgage to pay and a wee one to bring up, there are very few escapes left aside from the idiot box!
  20. Agree. I enjoyed Heroes a lot, but the point where it jumped the shark for me was when they created the supposed alternative future, with Sylar exploding after his *son* got killed, and then did nothing to drive towards that supposed ending. Despite the premise being that they were all going to converge there. I gave up on Lost after series 2, it was already pretentiously silly, but by all accounts it has just gotten worse. The wife is a fan of Stargate Universe (with Bob Carlyle) and from what I have seen it seems not bad from an entertainment perspective. I have also happened across The Good Wife, with Julianna Marguiles, while she's been watching it, and it seems to actually be a half decent drama as well. I keep hoping we will get some half decent drama over here, Doctor Who is good knock about fun, I really enjoyed Life on Mars, but then they sullied it by refusing to say "job well done" and instead decided to milk it with the awful Ashes to Ashes. I kept meaning to give Luther a try, but I am worried I may find it rubbish and may only be interested in it because it stars Stringer Bell...
  21. Thank you for being so constructive. I will have a word with the wife and see if she is willing to oblige...
  22. Sorry Tina :O I see Heroes has been cancelled, as has Flashforward and, rather shockingly, Law and Order has been shelved after 20 years. Yet at the same time, they commission another series of The (even less funny than the Gervais version) Office, a remake of the bloody Rockford Files (because there's been plenty campaigns for that) and JJ Abrams (surely the most over-rated producer of over-rated pish ever) is being commissioned to produce another new series which will probably consist of another long drawn out string of unanswered questions, absurd coincidences and general shiteness. Although I am starting to feel that way about Flashforward I hasten to add! I think the problem in US TV is that nobody seems geared up to follow a genuine story arc from beginning to end, and most of the shows were probably never created with an actual "ending" in sight. Anyone else going to miss any of these shows?
  23. I will be the fat slow guy in the Alzheimer Scotland t-shirt... I ran it for Children 1st in 2005-7 and did the Inverness 10K for them in 2004.
  24. Hi all Me and my brother are running the Baker Hughes 10K to raise money for Alzheimer Scotland. In order to raise as much money as possible for a charity that's very close to my heart, I'd be grateful for any donations folk might be willing to make. Anyone who has met me will know that watching me run 10K is probably worth a couple of quid just for the amusement value. No obligations, but I thought I'd post this up anyway. My Just Giving site is: Mark McDonald is fundraising for Alzheimer Scotland - JustGiving Cheers
  25. are you the guy who writes the ditties on those tear-off calendars?
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