SNP plans council shake-up in Glasgow ahead of first budget

The first Glasgow council budget to be set by a non-Labour administration in four decades will be debated at the City Chambers today. Picture: John Devlin
The first Glasgow council budget to be set by a non-Labour administration in four decades will be debated at the City Chambers today. Picture: John Devlin
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Scotland’s biggest arms-length management organisation could be scrapped and most of its services brought back in-house under budget plans to be debated by Glasgow City Council today.

Cordia, set up in 2008 to provide services ranging from school catering to home care, would be divided between the local authority’s development and regeneration services division and Glasgow Life.

The move forms a key part of the SNP’s first budget for the city since it became the largest party on Scotland’s biggest council at the 2017 elections, ending four decades of continuous Labour rule.

But the Nationalists, who lack an overall majority, must find support from other at least four other councillors to pass its plans.

A review of all arms-length organisations in Glasgow is currently underway. If it recommends Cordia should be scrapped, subject to committee approval, the council administration will set aside £2.5m to pay for it.

The plan would see the harmonisation of staff terms and conditions following the on-going battle for equal pay across Scottish councils.

Feargal Dalton, city convenor for workforce, said: “The administration has long believed that Cordia has outlived any usefulness those who created it believed it had. We said in our manifesto that we would seek to dismantle Labour’s inefficiencies and wanted a new relationship with our workforce. Laying out the financial plans to bring Cordia back into the council proper is part of that.

“Home carers employed within Cordia have been those most affected by the equal pay mess and legacy of inequalities left by previous administrations for the City Government to clear up. The harmonisation of terms and conditions is part of the overall strategy to resolve this.

“It has always seemed unwieldy and inefficient that services

such as school catering have been lumped in with home care. By bringing service providers closers in line with relevant council departments there will be improvements for service users and efficiencies for tax payers.”