>> 15 January 2010

The Community Warden Scheme is to become permanent after Aberdeenshire Council gave its backing to extending the scheme. The council's Policy and Resources Committee met yesterday (Thursday) and agreed to endorse the scheme.

Peterhead SNP councillor and member of the Policy and Resources Committee Cllr Stephen Smith told the meeting that the Community Wardens were a valuable asset to the town and the work they did was greatly appreciated. The Committee also heard that there have been significant improvements in a range of indicators relating to anti-social behaviour showing the effectiveness of the wardens.

News that the wardens scheme was to be made permanent was welcomed by SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford.

Speaking during the committee meeting, which was held in Woodhill House, Cllr Stephen Smith said:

"I'm delighted by this decision. I know from the local Community Councils, local organisations and constituents that the Community Wardens provide an effective service and have shown to deliver results.

"It has been an uncertain time for them as the scheme was only temporary and has been extended a couple of times but this decision now means that it will become permanent. Not only that, but the expertise developed by the wardens will now be available to other communities outside Peterhead on a needs basis.

"I was please also to receive a commitment from officials that the wardens will be brought up to full strength with the currently vacant post being filled."

SNP candidate Eilidh Whiteford added:

"This is very good news indeed. I know that Stephen has been a vocal supporter of the Community Warden scheme at several meetings of the council in the run-up to this decision so I'm very pleased that Peterhead and other communities in Buchan are now set to benefit from the scheme becoming permanent."

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