Parliamentary Moves

The Scottish Parliament was certainly abuzz last week. Not only did we officially reconvene after the summer recess, but Alex Salmond announced his surprise Cabinet re-shuffle, which has involved a big move of Scottish Government personnel.

Of particular interest to Fifers will be Alex Neil’s move from Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure and Capital Investment where, among other things, he oversaw progress on the new Forth Bridge, a project that appears well underway.

I have known Mr Neil for many years and am confident that, in his new role as Cabinet Secretary for Health and Well-being, he will bring his powerful intellect to bear on issues within NHS Scotland. I managed to catch up with him in Parliament to voice several concerns I have over the future of the Queen Margaret Hospital and the operation of the Victoria Hospital, and I will follow these issues up.

Another appointment that caught my eye was Margaret Burgess, a fellow MSP of the 2011 intake.  As the former Citizens Advice Bureau Manager for Ayrshire, she will bring a wealth of relevant knowledge and experience to the post of Minister for Welfare and Housing,

A new young Minister to watch is economist Paul Wheelhouse, who takes on responsibility for the Environment and Climate Change.  His sensitive yet business-like approach should equip him well for this demanding post.

The above was originally written for Bill’s Dunfermline Press column. This version may vary slightly.

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