On Friday (7th) John wrote to Highland Council condemning its decision to use vouchers from one of the worst offenders in the tax avoidance scandal as an incentive for Highland school pupils to pick up litter.
John was angry that, in a new project to run from January, money from Zero Waste Scotland’s Litter Prevention Innovation Fund is to be spent on Amazon vouchers as rewards for young people who used litter bins.
Instead John said that, if the scheme is to proceed, vouchers be given out that can be used in local shops in the areas covered by the 10 secondary schools taking part.
Commenting at the time he said:
“Not only does Amazon have a shocking track record in avoiding paying millions of pounds of UK taxes but their operation also squeezes local businesses to the point of closure. Furthermore its business model, built on insecure employment, goes against the long term sustainable economic growth supported by the Highland Council.
“If the scheme was changed to give out vouchers for local shops it would not only put some much needed business in the post-Christmas quiet period their way but also encourage young people to have a relationship with their local retailer instead of an anonymous online retailer which puts little or nothing back into local communities.
“I have written to the Leader of Highland Council, Councillor Drew Hendry, asking that this decision is reconsidered and I hope that the local authority will see sense.”
On Monday 10th John welcomed assurances from the Leader of Highland Council that the authority will rethink the way it uses public cash to help local businesses.
Commenting on the assurance John said;
“I am grateful for the assurance from Councillor Hendry that the Council will not support this disreputable multi-national but will support local businesses as Highland business deserves every bit of support the Highland Council and all of us can give it.”