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Local branch backs MSP’s campaign for better bus services

Iain Gray MSP attended a recent meeting of the Tranent and district branch Labour party to speak to local members about his work in the Scottish Parliament, including his forthcoming plans to introduce a Bill to Parliament to strengthen regulation of the bus industry in Scotland.

The local MSP praised the work of members of the Tranent branch, who secured such a remarkable result in the Fa'side ward in last year's local elections, and highlighted key areas of his work in Holyrood, including the recent campaign against the closure of Haddington Sheriff and JP Court.

Mr Gray also gave members some details on his plans for introducing legislation in Holyrood to give local authorities new powers to improve local bus services. He is proposing to introduce new contracts which would include a framework to specify routes, timetables, fares and vehicle quality.

This is particularly relevant to the Fa’side area after local bus services were brought to the verge of chaos when First announced the withdrawal of most of their services under the county's previous SNP-led council administration.

Speaking after the meeting, Iain Gray MSP said:

"It is always a pleasure to attend East Lothian Labour's Tranent and district branch. It is an active and hardworking branch, firmly embedded in the local community. This strong community engagement was borne out by the tremendous result they achieved in the local elections last year which saw the branch deliver three excellent local councillors.

"I welcomed the opportunity to update the branch on some key aspects of my recent work at Holyrood and here in East Lothian. It also gave me the chance to give members a heads up on my plans for introducing a Private Members Bill to Parliament to strengthen regulation of the bus industry, which would be of particular benefit in the Fa’side ward.”

Branch Chair Robert McNeill said:

"Having Iain speak to the branch got us off to a great start to the New Year. We are fortunate in East Lothian to have such a dedicated MSP. His leadership on the campaign against the closure of Haddington Sheriff and JP court has been outstanding and widely recognised by local people.

“We also welcome the fact that he intends to seek consensus on improving local bus services, particularly given the chaos local communities experienced last year when First withdrew vital services. I hope that the other political parties in East Lothian will join Labour in backing Iain’s efforts to deliver better buses for the whole of the county.”

The Tranent and District branch meets regularly, usually on the first Tuesday of the month, at the Loch Centre. For more information about meetings or other branch activity, please contact Ryan Norton on 01875 341195 or eastlothianlabour@btconnect.com

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