Mark attended an event hosted by Scotland's Charity Air Ambulance (SCAA) where they announced that they hope to launch their second charity helicopter service based in Aberdeen in late 2019. The charity has operated an air ambulance in 2013 which is based in Perth and works closely alongside the Scottish Air Ambulance Service, who have two Scottish government funded air ambulance’s based in Glasgow and Inverness.
Mark wrote to Scotrail bosses urging them to urgently repair the train station electric car charging points. The charging points, including the one at Dyce train station, stopped working at the beginning of May, and despite the six-week deadline for repair, are still offline almost six months later.
Commenting, Mark said:
“It is extremely disappointing to see that after nearly six months, ScotRail’s charging points for electric cars continue to be offline, despite the original six-week deadline.
“While there is a big push towards encouraging and promoting the use of electric vehicles, it’s important that the infrastructure to support their use is in place and reliable. ScotRail needs to act fast to get this issue sorted.”
Mark submitted a Parliamentary Question asking the Scottish Government “what recent discussions there have been between Transport Scotland and Aberdeen Roads Limited regarding the opening of the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route”. In his response, Michael Matheson, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, stated that following Mark’s question, he has “investigated the potential to open the 31.5km section of new road from Craibstone to Stonehaven and Charleston as soon as possible, while remedial work at the Don progresses”.
Mark has written to David Phillips, Operations Director at First Aberdeen, requesting that he reconsider their decision to scrap the night busses between Northfield and Torry and the Holburn Junction and Dyce.
Commenting, Mark said:
“I am disappointed that First Aberdeen have announced they will be scrapping three of their night busses, including the busses to Northfield and Dyce, in my constituency.
Mark wrote to Aberdeen City Council after being contacted by residents of Forrit Brae who were surprised by the recent groundworks on elevated land, as they had been assured the land elevation would be level with their homes.
Aberdeen City Council have since written to some residents apologising that the original planning documents for the 100-home scheme by Bancon were not clear enough. However, residents state that should they have known about the scale prior they would have complained en masse, meaning the development would have had to be scrutinised by the planning committee.
Mark is delighted that Aberdeen Airport have been awarded Changing Places accreditation for their new adult changing facility. These fully accessible toilets include a height-adjustable changing bench, a hoist and enough room for a wheelchair and up to two carers. This will help thousands of people across Scotland, who due to a wide range of physical and learning disabilities, cannot use standard accessible toilets.
Mark visited Instant Neighbour at their St Machar premises, where he met with their Business Development Manager, Susan Cheyne.
They discussed the work of the charity, which supports people through the sale of low-cost furnishings for homes and foodbank parcels, as well as providing volunteering opportunities and running the Giving Tree at Christmas.
To mark National Fitness Day, Mark was delighted to join in with JogScotland Bridge of Don’s running group. National Fitness Day is a day which encourages people to get involved in fitness and physical activity and helps to raise awareness of its importance in helping us lead healthier active lifestyles. It is well known that the benefits of regular exercise include a healthier heart, increased wellbeing and a better quality of life. Research also shows that if you exercise in company, you are more likely to stick at it; the social atmosphere creates a positive environment which is important in helping us have fun at the same time.
Mark attended ASDA Dyce's 'Plastic Purge' litter pick which took place at the River Don. The team managed to remove a lot of plastic waste and debris from around the riverbank.
Commenting Mark said:
"It's always great to see community initiatives to try and improve the cleanliness of the area.
"Hopefully people will avoid dropping their litter around the river area, as it is a beautiful place to walk in the local community, and it is a great shame to see it being spoiled by inconsiderate behaviours."
Aberdeen Donside MSP, Mark McDonald, is looking for an enthusiastic individual to join his constituency team in Aberdeen on a permanent basis.
Job Title: Caseworker
Hours: 35 hours per week (normal hours 9.30-4.30 but some flexibility may be required)
Full time/Part time: Full Time
Salary: £22,000 – £32,000 p/a dependent on experience
To provide support with all casework – including cases of a complex or sensitive nature – by investigating issues raised through correspondence and surgeries; dealing with general public enquiries, maintaining filing system, arranging surgeries and maintaining an in-depth understanding of the constituency to ensure the Member is well briefed.
Main Duties and Responsibilities
Skills and Experience
A full drivers’ licence and access to a vehicle would be useful. There will be occasions where evening and weekend working will be required.
To apply, please send CV and covering letter to firstname.lastname@example.org by the closing date of 12 noon, 16 November 2018.
Find out what Mark McDonald has been doing in his Aberdeen Donside constituency.