Old run down buildings need to go.

Another issue that cropped up today in Hurlford was that of buildings left to rot and the council doing nothing about it.

I have heard residents of the community Council ask Councillors about the old man’s cabin in Hurlford many times, however as per everything, they say legal are checking it out, we don’t know who owns it and therefore cant do anything.

This is not good enough for the residents and it’s not good enough for me. The council has compulsory orders on buildings, they need to be used. The building you see in this article is on the main street as you go through Hurlford to head to the motorway. How would you feel if you seen this on a daily occurrence?

Councillors need to start working in the interest of the community and make the hard decision, however difficult they may be. I shall be speaking to the Council again about this building and should I be elected on the 3 of May I will be pushing for this building to be knocked down or redeveloped. Ensuring our towns and villages look good will help towards attracting businesses to the area and bringing in people to settle here in East Ayrshire.

For a shift in vision and an active Councillor vote Rob Murray 1 on May the 3rd.

To adopt the roads or not to adopt, that is the question

Just in after a long and hard day on the campaign trail, however a very positive one.

Today I was speaking to residents in Hurlford and the Birds in Kilmarnock East. Residents were glad to see a new fresh thinking candidate appear on the scene and from the reactions I was getting there might just be a hint of change in the air.

Residents in Furnace Court they were telling and showing me the terrible state of the roads and pavements. One lady in particular had spoken to the Councillors several times and was given the response ‘it’s not adopted so we can’t do anything’. What type of response is this? Nothing is impossible; it might be hard work however anything can be achieved.

I have written to the Scottish Conservative Group leader highlighting the problem and seeing if a risk assessment can be carried out and if deemed to be a risk, work done to repair the pavements.

It doesn’t stop there. If elected on the 3 May, I will be launching a campaign to get the Council to adopt roads and pavements from more than 10 years ago and where the company has gone bust. It’s shocking that Councillors are shying away from sorting out this problem and shrugging their duties. Residents pay their taxes and one of the things the Council is to do is repair our pavements and roads. Morally Councillors have a duty here even if they legally don’t have to.

So come the 3 May, the fight will continue to ensure our roads are safe.

Young Enterprise Ayrshire Awards 2012

After a busy day on the campaign trail I took some time out last night to attend the Young Enterprise Ayrshire Awards.

Listening to the young people who had worked so had and spent a lot of time developing their products was truly inspirational. East Ayrshire was strongly represented by a number of academies and Kilmarnock College.

I must say although I was there as a spectator I unexpectedly won a prize, drum roll, a fitness DVD from the YETI company at James Hamilton Academy. So a big thank you to them for the prize, I will get onto it after the election!

The night wouldn’t have been possible if it wasn’t for the generosity of our Ayrshire businesses so I wanted to say thank you to them for investing in our young people. Oh and cheers to the guys at Cann Print who very kindly took me as their guest to the event. Cann Print is a great Ayrshire family business and most importantly its based in Crookedholm, so it is at the heart of our community.

Campaign up-date from Crookedholm

Enjoyed listening to Provost Young yesterday morning as she gave her last address to the chamber before the election and hearing the closing remarks from the group leaders. There was a real sense of uncertainly and worry from the room, I guess that’s the nature of being a Councillor, it’s not a job for life!

I had a fantastic afternoon out listening to residents in Crookedholm. A lot of people already voted by postal ballot however those that hadn’t were happy to chat and were happy just to see one of the candidates, as Labour and SNP have been nowhere to be seen in the past five years.

As I said to one resident, if I am elected on the 3rd of May, I will be on the doorsteps and visiting groups every week, after all it’s the only way one gets the views of the residents. Vote for change vote Murray 1

I pledge to support Young People across Kilmarnock East & Hurlford

As someone who has spent a long time studying in the field of Community Education and then working with children and young people through youth clubs in East Ayrshire, support services in North Ayrshire and in Scouting across the country, I fully support the Youth Link Scotland manifesto.

Young people are a crucial key in society today and if we have the right services in place and fun activities young people can grow and prosper. We need to ensure we get it right for every young person and that is why I will continue to be a loud voice for increasing youth provision across Scotland.

The four key Youth Work Pledges that I am supporting are as follows:

• Pledge to ensure that no young person is left behind in any of Scotland’s 32 local authority areas – we cannot afford to have another lost generation of young people in Scotland. Youth work helps to develop the personal and professional skills vital in assisting young people with the key transitions they face in life.

• Pledge to improve equality of access to youth work services in all 32 local authority areas in Scotland – young people do not currently have a right of access to youth work services and experiences and opportunities vary depending on their location.

• Pledge to improve sustained, permanent funding for youth work services and to support and work with the voluntary sector in all 32 local authority areas – to help strengthen local provision, delivery and capacity of youth work services.

• Pledge to improve recognition in all 32 local authority areas of the positive and preventative impact of youth work – youth work in Scotland positively engages with more than 300,000 young people, helping to develop key employability skills and a sense of community cohesion. For the many individuals and communities it engages with, it is the ultimate form of preventative spend.

Common sense on Council Tax

Under Labour and the Lib Dems, Council tax increased by almost £500 in just 8 years. At the last Scottish election Scottish Labour to start with would not support Scottish Conservative and SNP plans to freeze Council tax. Scottish Labour then said they would support it however during the election campaign it became clear that Scottish Labour did not support a Council tax freeze and even hinted at increasing it, highlighting why they cannot be trusted.

Thanks to Scottish Conservative MSP’s and Councillors working with the SNP, Council Tax has been frozen for the past five years.

When the Council Tax Freeze eventually ends, our manifesto commitments is the Scottish Conservative in East Ayrshire will vote to change the law to give local residents the power to stop bills rising faster than inflation.

This is our commitment, the SNP have also said they support Council Tax freeze yet nothing from East Ayrshire Labour.

In order to keep you bills low, keep Council Tax Frozen for as long as possible, and giving residents the power to stop bills rising, vote Rob Murray 1 on the 3 May and together we can look after our pennies.

Quality Education is crucial

Every child in East Ayrshire deserves the best start in life and that means a good quality education in schools that are fit for the demands of the twenty first century.

Over recent years many local schools have been refurbished or rebuilt in Kilmarnock East & Hurlford and I am advocating that more funding becomes available for a further improvement programmes for East Ayrshire Schools.

My pledge if elected on the 3 May is to:

  • improve standards in our schools for all pupils
  • close the attainment gap between the richest and poorest
  • ensure we have safe classrooms
  • ensure we have talented and specialist teachers
  • ensure access to the best curriculum and exams,
  • have smaller schools with smaller class sizes.

These may not seem like big things however they are to the many families I have spoken to over the past few years and that is why I will be pushing for these pledges to become a reality.

Caring for the Elderly is a priority

Caring for the Elderly is a priority for any Councillor. The Conservatives have shown they are serious about supporting the elderly as shown through the first real times increase in state pension for a generation. From April 2012 those on a state pension will receive a £5.30 weekly increase.

I believe people deserve dignity and respect in old age, and they should be given the support they need. This means safeguarding key benefits and pensions. My commitmented if elected on the 3 May is to:

  • ensure every elderly resident in Kilmarnock East, NewFarm Loch, Crookedholm and Hurlford are in the appropriate accommodation to meet their needs.
  • ensure we as a Council support any elderly person who wishes to stay in their home.
  • ensure support services such as home helps, and personal care assistants are not taken away from the vulnerable.
  • engage with and support elderly forums and elderly social groups, to ensure their voice is not missed when representing the views of local people in the chamber.

If the long standing members of our community put their trust in me on 3 May by voting Rob Murray 1, I will stand by my pledges above to support the elderly.