As the old saying goes, “a new broom sweeps clean”. In the recent elections, the SNP promised change, but their promises tend to have a very short shelf-life.

They promised new area committees, monthly council and committee meetings, but just two months on these were downgraded to mere aspirations.

They promised an open, transparent council, but their provost refused to debate a civic reception for veterans, the threat to the GP out-of-hours service or Singer Station’s plans for a school of music and dance for youngsters, in the heart of the Vale. The Provost, having already made up his mind, brushed away the motions before they were even read out to councillors.

In addition, the leader of the council, who campaigned for “a strong SNP voice on the health board”, meekly defended his non-attendance on the basis he didn’t think there was anything worthwhile on the agenda. I suspect his non-attendance at the public meeting on GP out of hours services wouldn’t have been worthwhile either.

And to top it all, at the June council meeting the SNP had the chance to sweep us off our feet by backing Labour’s call for a report on equal pay. Instead they stuck to the party line until it slowly dawned on them they had lost the argument and would lose the vote. In their panic, they called ‘time out’, accepting they were wrong.

Looking ahead, the new administration will have some challenges and opportunities. Labour’s investments in new offices, new schools, new care homes, new housing, road improvements, leisure, play facilities and parks; along with the external investment plans in Clydebank, Bowling, Dumbarton, the Vale and Balloch will give the SNP conveners plenty of photo opportunities over the coming months and years.

However, the new administration is already busily constructing arguments against the new bridge across the Clyde, the Sustrans road investments in Clydebank and tended to drag their feet over the £28m Exxon development with the potential of 700 jobs and a second east-west road. Labour’s councillors will continue our fight for these much-needed investments.

The real SNP challenge will come in the autumn when they deal with the reality of Scottish Government budget cuts. The SNP leaders strategy is simple: consult the public on management adjustments, recurring savings and political cuts, and then blame local residents for making poor choices while letting the Scottish Government off the hook.