Today was the first full meeting of Glasgow City Council, and was pretty exciting stuff for the SNP's 19 new Councillors in Glasgow. We were allocated seats alphabetically, which apparently we're supposed to stay in for the duration - to my surprise and shock, mine is right down the front, flanked by Cllr. George Roberts, and Cllr. Tartan Hero.
The meeting itself didn't feature the most passionate of debates (I'm told this is usual for this kind of meeting), but what was interesting was the reaction of the Labour Councillors to their new opposition members. Some seemed to believe that our 22, the 5 Greens, 5 Lib Dems, sole Tory and Solidarity members were some kind of cohesive mass. When it came to divvying up the Committee positions, it was suggested that only the Labour positions should be filled on the Committees until "the opposition" got themselves sorted out. Fortunately, Labour accepted that the SNP and the Greens had made their proposals for Committee membership clear, and allowed extra time for the Lib Dems and the two others make their choices. It should be interesting to see how the difference in the make up of the Council shows itself in the weeks and months ahead.
There was a fair bit of banter in the meeting, but I was surprised by some of the informality of the proceedings - I'm used to watching the Scottish Parliament, or attending SNP conferences, where speeches are regimented for time and motions and amendments are formally tabled. It'll take some time to know the rules and how to use them.
Also at the meeting, the Convener of Glasgow YSI, David McDonald, became the youngest Baillie in Glasgow City Council - see his blingy chain! At 24, he's no John West, but I'm sure he'll still bring a very different perspective to the job than the elders who usually take such posts!