A range of Council improvements are on the way for Aberdeenshire residents following the agreement struck between Democratic Independent and Green Group (DIGG) councillors Paul Johnston and Martin Ford and the Council's new coalition administration elected yesterday (8 June).

The two DIGG councillors voted in favour of electing the new administration at yesterday's special full council meeting of Aberdeenshire Council – in order to secure important Council policy changes the new administration has agreed with the DIGG to introduce.

Green councillor Martin Ford said: "The new administration has made a formal agreement to implement a range of DIGG policies.

"Under the DIGG agreement with the new administration, the Council will in future undertake proper public consultation on its annual budget. The Council will increase the annual spend on support for active travel – cycling and walking – and bring in other measures to help reduce carbon emissions. There will be no cuts to the budget for community learning and development. The Council's procurement rules will be changed to take account of wider benefits that might be secured through purchasing decisions.

"The Council will support including re-opening the Dyce to Ellon railway line in the proposed Aberdeen City Region Deal."

The two DIGG councillors and independent councillor Dave Stewart were the only three members of Aberdeenshire Council not to change their situation yesterday – remaining in opposition throughout.

The new Aberdeenshire Council administration is a Labour/Independent/SNP coalition.

Cllr Martin Ford said: "The DIGG looks forward to working constructively with both the Council's new administration and those who are now also, like us, in opposition."