The claim, reported by Hebrides News, that the Council knew about the plans for reassessing the Range, with the possibility of job losses, is shocking.
Sadly, it is as believable as it is unbelievable, and with a disgraceful inevitability it would appear that culpability for the debacle lies as much with (at least part of) the Council as it does with the MP and MSP.
Although the claim is that all Southern Isles Councillors were notified about the plans at the time poses all sorts of questions But questions must also arise about exactly who in the Council knew about these proposals, what decisions they took, and what did they actually do?
In a seeming desperate dive for the moral low ground, the ferrets are fighting in the sack; and I feel an FoI coming on to separate truth from press release.
It seems undisputed that the Southern Isles Councillors knew and did nothing. Why?
With Councillors basic salaries trebling to £15,000 in May 2007, a certain increased responsibility naturally came with the pay rise, and that means they are going to have to justify their inaction to their communities.
Just what did you do when you were told the news in the Summer of 2007? What exactly were you told (send me a copy of the email/letter, please)? And why did you act surprised when the news became public six months later?
That is what you are going to have to answer on the doorsteps, whether you like it or not.
None of that excuses the failures of MacNeil or Allan, but it puts into context a seeming culture of inability and failure to identify priority issues by our elected representatives.
The Council, meantime, needs to give the public full clarity about its own actions.
And Mr MacSween needs to confirm exactly when he knew about the Qinetiq/MOD plans or he will be tarred with the same brush that he is wielding.