AN OPPOSITION councillor hit out at council bosses last week after being told officers dealing with Greenlight Environmental were not available as they were “on leave”.

The collapse of the firm was subject of an emergency debate at the last meeting of West Dunbartonshire Council a month ago but there was no update available last week.

Community Party Councillor Jim Bollan told the meeting last Thursday: “It is completely unacceptable for chief executive Joyce White to say that officers dealing with this are on leave, it is unacceptable.

“A total of 109 people lost their jobs with Greenlight Environmental. It’s shoddy and unacceptable.”

Mrs White replied: “I will request an immediate update. I apologise for this and I will brief Cllr Bollan privately within 24 hours.”

The CEO’s reply sparked an even angrier response from Cllr Bollan who said: “The press and general public are here at the full council. It is unacceptable to be briefed privately.

“What ever happened to openness and transparency? It is undemocratic.”

In August the council “noted” that Greenlight Environmental employed 109 staff which provided a range of services to West Dunbartonshire residents, including the care of gardens scheme.

Greenlight Environmental applied for voluntary administration following its failure to honour its payments to HMRC.

Council leader Jonathan McColl, taking part in the debate, said: “People on the Greenlight full-time contracts have been kept on full-time contracts with the council over the same period of time.”

Last month councillors, following a motion from SNP Councillor Ian McLaren, agreed that Greenlight Environmental continues to trade in some form but in the event that this is not feasible the council will explore all options available.

Labour Councillor David McBride said: “I’m disappointed with the SNP administration having agreed a motion at full council in August.

“It is disingenuous to support a motion and then do nothing about it.”

Provost William Hendrie cut the debate short saying: “We have to move on, this is just an item agreeing the minutes of a previous meeting.”