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Aberdeenshire Council appoints its new Provost

By David Porter

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The first full meeting of Aberdeenshire Council took place as hybrid meeting at Woodhill House, the first since the election on May 5.

Chief executive Jim Savage welcomed the 70 new councillors, a total of 66 who attended, most of whom were in the chamber, with the rest attending virtually.

With the coalition lead by the Conservatives, Lib-Dems and aligned Independents, the first order of the meeting was the nomination of a new provost.

Councillor Judy Whyte
Councillor Judy Whyte

A formal proposal was made to elect Independent councillor Judy Whyte as provost and a second for SNP councillor Steven Smith to the same position.

Following voting, councillor Whyte was elected by a majority of 42 - 23 with one no vote.

She paid tribute to her predecessor Bill Howatson and said it was a privilege to take on his role.

She said: "It is a great responsibility and one which I will do not take lightly.

"You have elected all of us here today to represent you.

"We come in to this chamber to focus on Aberdeenshire and keeping the needs of our residents at heart.

"I look forward to working with each and every councillor."

The Deputy Provost position was nominated to Westhill councillor Ron McKail, the previous deputy who returns to the position.

Councillor Mark Findlater
Councillor Mark Findlater

The role of Council leader was voted without opposition to Troup councillor and Conservative Group Leader Mark Findlater.

He commented: "Thank you for your support, the folk have put there trust in you, their trust is in your hands."

The deputy leadership of the council was nominated to Turriff councillor Anne Stirling.

"It is a privilege to be in a positing to affect change for our communities ans I will work towards a collaborative partnership that works to respond to issues that we all have to face up to, " she said.

"There are challenges and opportunities ahead and we must work together to make Aberdeenshire a place that we wish to represent."

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