Newly elected Tory group leader lays out Capital agenda

A FORMER police inspector has been elected leader of the Edinburgh Conservatives, and has pledged to crack down on financial waste and tackle the refuse collection fiasco.

Cameron Rose will lead the 11-strong group of councillors at the City Chambers from next week with efficiency at the top of his agenda.

The 58-year-old was yesterday elected as leader in Edinburgh, following the resignation of Jeremy Balfour, who stood down to convene the local authority’s new scrutiny committee.

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He has previously been finance and education spokesman for the party and has advocated tailoring the city’s education system to match employers’ expectations.

The Southside/Newington representative has also advocated matching schools with philanthropists, big business and entrepreneurs, which has been successful in Sweden and the US.

Councillor Rose said the Edinburgh Trams delays and statutory repairs scandal had damaged the city’s reputation.

He said: “Edinburgh is a wonderful city, but it is no secret that it faces a number of challenges in the coming months and years.

“With its reputation tarnished by trams, by the statutory notices scandal and now with basic waste collection faltering badly, Edinburgh needs a different approach. The task before me and my colleagues is to play a full and constructive part in restoring confidence in Edinburgh and enabling residents to feel proud of their city once again.”

He also said that, with a large Labour and SNP administration, which is undefeatable in votes, running the Capital, a strong opposition was needed to hold it to account.

He added: “Our job as the main opposition on the council is to work constructively for the good of the city by scrutinising effectively the record of the Labour/SNP administration.

“Our job as Conservative councillors is to take every opportunity to promote efficiency, challenge bureaucracy, and ensure hard-pressed council tax payers get value for money.”

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Councillor Rose, who has lived in the Meadows area and has been an elected member since 2007, was chosen yesterday by his fellow party councillors.

Councillor Joanna Mowat said: “I’m sure Cameron is going to be a strong leader, he’s already shown he’s willing to take on a challenge and is pursuing an alternative school provision for this city in his previous role.”