July Branch Meeting Report

Maureen Bennison

Maureen is standing down as Minute Secretary and a new one is needed for the next meeting!

Despite this being a July and “traditionally” not a month we meet in due to holiday commitments of members, the decision was taken in June to meet as sufficient members expressed an interest in the branch gathering. So it was mildly surprising perhaps at the turn out which was impressively large! One of the best attended meetings this year I would guess?

Convener opened meeting and reported on attendance at a Bannockburn Rally and the National Council meeting. The Secretary also mentioned this and briefly mentioned the STUG2015 conference at Stirling Uni which he hadn’t been able to attend but was interested in the outcomes and pointing out that the STUG now outnumbers the entire Scottish Labour membership! On branch business the Convener intimated that Maureen is standing down as Minute Secretary and a new one is needed for the next meeting. Please contact Andrew directly via our contact page if you are interested in this role either short term or longer term. Maureen will remain in place as Equalities officer for the Branch.

Treasurers report was the usual mix of optimism and tragedy ( just kidding!) , funds have been depleted by recent campaigning but will recover quickly aided and abetted by our forthcoming fund raising efforts!

The council group reported that the summer recess was now in place but fed back to the branch on matters such as the proposal by the Labour/Tory administration to cancel future Stirling Hogmanay celebrations, and also on the shared services proposals and the report by Ernst and Young ( also mentioned by Branch Secretary).

Comms reported website traffic peaked at 13500 individual users in June, and it was mentioned by the Convener that the Westminster team were now referring directly to our site as a resource for speech information to their own followers in Branches and on Twitter. We are holding back a little on the next opinion pieces due to the summer months.

Campaigning for the forthcoming Stirling Council East Ward by-election following the resignation of our new MP Steven Paterson from the Council, following the General Election victory in May, and also looking further ahead to the Scottish Government Elections in 2016 was also discussed.

 

Conference places, the branch has allocated the 12 sponsored places for delegate passes, and is able to send up to 36 members total as delegates, the remaining 24 places will need to be paid for by branch members. Some members mentioned the cost of accomodation in Aberdeen being high around conference. While Aberdeen IS an expensive city for accommodation at the best of times, there are reasonable rates still available NOW if you book. Hopefully this link helps for one such option.

A proposal for a motion regarding Trident, for conference was proposed by Kenneth Wardrop and carried by the Branch and further, the Branch Convener’s proposal from last month that the Branch may like to affiliate with some like minded organisations, in the first instance Stirling CND, was put to the meeting and also carried by the members present. Read more about the Trident issues here and watch a recent House of Commons debate on nuclear weapons transport issues here.

Finally there was some discussion around concerns over TTIP, and the EU.

Next meeting is in August when we expect Council by-election campaign mode to be in full swing and we hopefully will see the fruits of forthcoming fundraising efforts. Check out our fundraiser schedule and the Deputy convener asked if members have any items suitable for a Car boot/Bric a Brac, home made items sale, to get in touch with him directly via the special email address: saleitems@stirlingsnp.com . Also if any members have suitable storage space for holding onto larger items prior to the sale, get in touch too!