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The truths they don't want you to read....

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Regeneration action plan

The (re-)launch of the plan by Jim Mather would be bathetic if only it wasn't so sadly pathetic.

'Plan' is perhaps too grand phrase, as it seems to be more of a series of ideas thrown together in the hope that one or more of them might actually deliver something.

A key part of the strategy seems to have been to rule out the non-existent plans for a nuclear power station in Lewis. Presumably he is also ruling out elephant ranching; inter-planetary space-ports; and, a bid for the olympics.
On Thursday, he was locked in all-day crunch talks with Western Isles Council and development bodies all day over how renewable energy can be the lynchpin in transforming the ailing Hebridean economy.
And on Friday....
The Western Isles has lost out on developing a large offshore wind farm it has emerged.
But back to the report commissioned by Halcrow, which
puts forward new ideas for tourism, food and drink and the financial services industry for the Hebrides.
So nothing for the salmon processing sector or the tweed industry (other than the passing on of European Grants).

As someone involved in the financial services sector, I know that it is specifically excluded from the HIE schemes for assistance. With a dramatically increased minimum investment of £100,000 required before HIE will even get involved, then either HIE will have to back-track on their recent strategy, or they are going to be targeting large (grandiose?) investments in preference to developing local businesses.

I expect the results of the urgent study into the immediate and serious economic problems to be announced in due course with a scheme to (coincidentally) come into effect just in time for the next election in 2011.

Call me a cynic, but we are not high up the agenda and our parliamentary representatives seem to have no ability to move things forward - as opposed to arranging endless meetings, seminars and summits.

Am I right in understanding that they were not present at the meetings with the Council on Thursday?


Anonymous said...

How about someone doing an FOI to find out how much the consultants have been paid for this. This same group I believe also did a report in 2003 on the same topic which also overtly hyped up renwables.

Anonymous said...

11:42, how about that 'someone' being you?

Anonymous said...

Well said by the bearded one today.

Anonymous said...

angus, you're a cynic!