Coutts eyes leader role

Interim SIC leader Steven Coutts. Photo: Hans J Marter/Shetland News

SHETLAND Islands Council’s interim leader Steven Coutts has signalled his desire to take on the role on a permanent basis.

A report on the position will be presented at the next meeting of the full council on 9 May, where a decision is expected to be made.

Shetland West councillor Coutts took on the role on an interim basis in March after Cecil Smith stepped down for personal reasons. He had been the depute leader.

Coutts confirmed that he has now notified his fellow councillors of his intention to stand for the permanent role.

He added that while he has had positive feedback from his peers so far, “obviously it’s a democratic decision for the 22 councillors”.

Coutts said on Thursday that he wasn’t aware of any other members putting their name forward for the job.

The councillor was first elected in 2012, initially as a member for the North Isles ward.

Should Coutts be appointed leader, then it will be up to the council to resolve whether or not it should appoint a new depute leader.