Council calls for Scottish Government to halt RET plans

COUNCILLORS are calling on the Scottish Government to halt their plans to remove RET from commercial vehicles until after a study of the socio-economic impacts is completed.

Following a positive meeting with hauliers this afternoon, Angus Campbell, Leader of the Comhairle made a statement to this evening’s meeting of the full council.

As well as urging the Scottish Government to hold fire on their plans, he also gave campaigners the Comhairle’s full backing.

“The Comhairle supports the Outer Hebrides Transport Group in seeking to reverse Scottish Government’s proposals to remove RET for commerical vehicles and will work with the Group to assist this element of its work.,” he said.

Continuing he said: “The Comhairle requests that the Scottish Government introduces RET on the ferry services on the Sound of Barra and Harris; and that the revised charging of vehicles from 5m to 6m be applied to the Sounds of Barra and Harris at the earliest opportunity; and, in any event, no later than 1 April 2013; and that the Chief Executive, with the Directors of Development and Technical Services, submit a report to the March Transportation Committee seeking approval for the Comhairle’s response to the Ferries Review and proposing further action in support of the Comhairle’s policy position on RET.”

His statement was unanimously supported by all councillors present.