I've never lived in the west of Scotland so I have no personal experience of council services there. My knowledge is gleaned from reading. Many local authorities all over the UK are having problems dealing with the 2.6% cuts required of them by the Scottish government.
Inverclyde council is one of them. Only last month it was in the news for suspending four officials who operated their Future Operating Model which was found to have failed to save any money whatsoever. Please note I've refrained from making comment about John Mundell, the chair of the FOM, being ill in the Canary Islands during December.
Along he contradicts his decision has anything to do with the council's troubles, the head of the Labour-led administration at Inverclyde council Stephen McCabe (pictured), has jumped ship. He's too busy to lead the council and is neglecting his young family he insists. Indeed he is a busy man - he's also a senior official at a housing association. But, according to Mr McCabe and a 'source' from within the council he's also very ambitious and has his eye on standing for Holyrood. "I've no Westminster ambitions but, if a vacancy over arose in the area where I was born and bred and now represent, I would consider putting myself forward".
Mr McCabe represents the Inverclyde East ward which is represented in the Scottish parliament by Labour's Duncan McNeil. He is 61 this year but I doubt if he's keen to leave politics. Does Mr McCabe know something we don't or is he one of these exceptional fathers who really does intend to hold his son's hand while he sits his Standard Grades? Somehow I don't think his son will be too pleased to hear this is his father's intention.
The ex-Labour leader of the council won't be short of a bob or two though. He's keeping his position as a senior official of a housing association.