Isles FM News: Tuesday 5th May 2020

COMHAIRLE MEETING WEDNESDAY 6th MAY


As a result of the COVID-19 crisis, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar is putting special measures in place to allow a meeting of the Comhairle this week on Wednesday 6th May.

Committee meetings have been temporarily suspended but items will be considered at the full meeting of the Comhairle. This will be the first time such a format has been adopted.

Most Members of the Comhairle will attend on a virtual basis. The public and press will not be able to attend the meeting in person but will be able to follow on-line through Vscene. A link to the meeting will be posted on the Comhairle website issued via a press release and posted on the Comhairle’s social media channels, ten minutes prior to the meeting.

An archive recording of the meeting will be available on the Comhairle website following the meeting.

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar Chief Executive, Malcolm Burr, said:

“As has been often stated, these are unprecedented times and therefore we are having to take unprecedented steps to allow the democratic process to continue to take place. It important that we do so and that all Members have the opportunity to discuss issues and take decisions.”

The full Comhairle meeting will take place at 10am on 6 May.

Read more: Isles FM News: Tuesday 5th May 2020

Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News: Monday 4th May 2020

TRADING STANDARDS & POLICE SCOTLAND WARNING BUSINESS GRANTS SCAM

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar Trading Standards, and Police Scotland have issued a warning to local businesses, about a new scam that has come to light, regarding business grants during the Covid-19 crises.
This scam involves an unsolicited email, claiming to be from the local authority, informing the business that they have been successful, in their Covid business grant application. The email indicates a link to authorise details of the nominated bank account of the business, to allow payment to be processed. Trading Standards are warning, that if detailed information about the business is provided, this could then be used, for fraudulent purposes.


A spokesperson for Trading Standards states “At a time when many businesses are struggling and really need to make use of the business grants available, we can rely on the unscrupulous scammers to step in and attempt to make a bad situation even worse. We urge all businesses to check emails received very carefully, and if it is from a source not known to you, do not respond.”
To check validity of emails regarding business grants Business Gateway can be contacted on 01851 822775 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Read more: Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News: Monday 4th May 2020

Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News: Friday 1st May 2020

BUSINESSES GET CASH SUPPORT THROUGH CRISIS

Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MSP, Alasdair Allan, has welcomed new figures showing that 423 businesses, in the Western Isles have received Scottish Government grants, to support firms through the coronavirus crisis.

 

A total of £4.79 million has been awarded in the Western Isles, through a Scottish Government scheme, to support small businesses and the retail, hospitality and leisure sector.

Alasdair Allan commented: “This is a very difficult time for businesses. This Scottish Government funding, is designed to support firms, to ensure our economy is on the best possible footing, when we get through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more: Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News: Friday 1st May 2020

Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News: Thursday May 30th 2020

NHS WESTERN ISLES LAUNCHES COVID-19 TELEPHONE LINE

NHS Western Isles has launched a new Coronavirus (COVID-19), health support telephone line, for those living and working within the Western Isles.

The service has been set up to answer general health queries or concerns, from members of the public, health and social care staff, regarding the Covid-19 situation. The telephone number 01851 601151 will be open from 09.00am-5.30pmMonday-Friday


Information can also be found at the new local support, website, www.coronavirus.wi.nhs.scot. But, if you or a member of your household is experiencing symptoms of coronavirus, then you should still call NHS24 on 111 in the first instance.

Read more: Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News: Thursday May 30th 2020

Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News: Wednesday 29th April 2020

CROFT PROPERTIES AND HOME CARE COST

Comhailre Nan Eilean Siar has sparked anger by restarting its controversial practice of assessing croft properties to count towards care home costs.
The practice is deeply contentious across the Western Isles for effectively forcing people to sell the family croft to meet the costs of residential care for an elderly relative.

The local authority was forced to halt a number of ongoing cases eight weeks ago following a vote by councillors at a special meeting. Now it has reversed that suspension without referring the matter to all councillors as previously agreed, after obtaining new legal advice from an eminent Scottish QC.

SNP Councillor Calum Macmillan is furious by officials apparently overruling Councillors and ignoring their decision for the matter to return to the full council for further scrutiny.
He accused council bosses of making a "mockery of decision-making in the Western Isles. Our communities deserve better.”

He added:

"Reverting to the original controversial practice of forcing the sale of croft houses is not competent and must therefore be withdrawn, as the required information has yet to be presented to councillors," insisted Mr Macmillan.

Gordon Murray, the leader of the SNP group of councillors, stated:

Read more: Isles FM News in association with Hebrides News: Wednesday 29th April 2020