Name: Davie Sandison Electoral Ward: Shetland Central Description: Independent
A Bit About Me
I am married, with 5 children and 2 grandchildren and live in Scalloway. I provide business support for Hame Fae Hame childcare, as well as being company secretary. I am currently the Chair of the Board of Management for Shetland UHI, the newly merged college for Shetland.
I have been honoured to serve as a councillor for the Central Ward for the last 10 years, having gained considerable experience and understanding of how the Council works for the people of Shetland. With the boundary changes making this a larger Ward, widening it to take in parts of the West ward, I look forward to getting fully engaged with new constituents in the coming weeks.
Economy Jobs Education & Housing
- I will continue to be a vocal advocate for the seafood industry and will continue to support our aquaculture, fishing and processing sectors and the hugely important land- based businesses that service them. Shetlands traditional industries will continue to be the backbone of our economy and must be supported. The council needs to create the conditions for attracting long term investments, by ensuring infrastructure and support services are aligned to industry needs.
- The redevelopment of the Scalloway Fish Market was an important achievement of the last council. I shall lobby strongly for further development in Scalloway harbour, principally a new and extended West pier, capable of meeting the needs of the fishing and fish farming sector and for multi-use, including the oil & gas support for West of Shetland. I am also keen on attracting tourists via the smaller cruise and yacht market for the wider benefit of Scalloway businesses and community.
- Scalloway needs further industrial estate capacity, and I will support inclusion of this in the Local Development Plan [LDP] currently being consulted on. In addition, industrial unit space is needed in Tingwall and in the Weisdale area, to meet small business demand.
- Provision of housing, both social and private, is crucial if we are to retain our younger people and families and to ensure we can meet the demands of business and the public sector for job vacancies. We need a long-term house building programme that supports a vibrant local building sector and encourages commitment to apprenticeships in key trades. We also need to invest in schemes to upgrade the energy efficiency of housing stocks to meet climate change targets, creating decent job opportunities whilst doing so. Lack of areas for housing development remains a big challenge for Scalloway and Burra, with families moving out of the area all too often. Similarly, the current LDP consultation has questionable logic in the levels of provision in Tingwall, Whiteness & Weisdale, in relation to existing infrastructure and services.
- The biggest achievement of the last Council was the work done in securing full and fair funding of our internal ferry services. This amounts to more than 10% of the total funding we receive from Scottish Government for running council services. This ensures we are better able to continue balancing the books and draw less from our reserves to subsidise these services.
- Education and children’s services remains the biggest area of council expenditure. The efficiencies in maintaining our levels of provision in the last council have ensured we can balance departmental budgets. Significantly, the last council approved the new Learning Estate Strategy, aimed at targeting investment into school buildings that need capital upgrades to meet present and future need. I strongly support this long-term plan.
Why am I standing again?
- I stated at the last election that it takes a long-term commitment to achieve some of the changes and strategic goals needed, and this has not changed. I have been supportive of what has been achieved in sorting out our finances, restoring stability, seeking efficiencies, and protecting the core services we all deserve and rely on. At this time, there is still much work in progress and huge challenges to come.
If you feel I have the correct balance of experience, tenacity, and level headedness to help represent your views and aspirations for our community, please put a 1 against my name on the ballot paper on 5th May
I can be contacted by various means: