A LABOUR bid to take over three of the four top posts on a Scottish council and hand another to the Rubbish Party has fallen flat.

Since the 2022 elections the SNP has ruled as a minority administration on East Ayrshire Council, with 14 members.

There are 10 Labour and four Conservative members along with four "independent" members (Councillor Sally Cogley is the sole representative of The Rubbish Party).

There was a sense of deja vu for Provost Jim Todd and Depute Provost Claire Leitch, who were both controversially ousted in 2021 after four years in their roles.

Labour’s Barry Douglas and the Rubbish Party’s Cogley took over until the 2022 local elections, after which Provost Todd and Depute Provost Leitch regained the positions.

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A council meeting on Thursday opened with the election of the civic posts.

Jim Todd was renominated by the SNP, with Labour proposing Elaine Stewart and Conservatives putting forward James Adams.

Todd received 17 votes, including former Labour group leader John McGhee, with Elaine Stewart getting 11 votes and James Adams picking up four votes.

Councillor Leitch was once again up against Cogley, who was nominated by the Labour group, while the Conservatives put forward Councillor Alyson Simmons.

Councillor Leitch received 16 votes, with Cogley receiving 11 and Simmons getting four votes. As there was no absolute majority a second round was held between Leitch and Cogley, with Cllr Simmons removed from the vote.

This time the vote was 16 – 15 in favour of Leitch, with one member abstaining.

The pattern remained the same for the vote for Leader and Depute Leader.

Councillor Reid was proposed by the SNP, with Maureen McKay and John McFadzean for Labour and Conservative respectively.

The vote saw 16 for Reid, 11 for McKay, four for McFadzean and one abstention, meaning re-election for Reid.

The vote went exactly the same way with Depute Leader Jim McMahon elected for the SNP ahead of Labour’s Barry Douglas and Conservative’s Neill Watts.

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Three of the independents also voted consistently, with Councillor Drew Filson supporting the SNP group, and Cogley and Graham Boyd voting with Labour.

Ellen Freel abstained in the votes for Leader and Depute Leader.

Labour continued to seek a shake up of the administration despite losing out on the top jobs.

When the SNP suggested the make up of the Cabinet remain as it was – with six portfolio holders (five SNP and one independent) councillor, Drew Filson, as well as two Labour representatives and one Conservative representative, McKay proposed that there would be five Labour portfolio holders and one independent – Councillor Graham Boyd.

The vote for maintaining the status quo was approved, with 20 votes for that proposal against 11 for the Labour proposal, with one abstention.