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MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS

Meeting of the Parliament

Vol 3, No 43

Thursday 10 January 2002

 
 

The meeting opened at 9.30 am.

1. Health and Community Care Committee, Report on Hepatitis C: Mrs Margaret Smith, on behalf of the Health and Community Care Committee, moved S1M-2565—That the Parliament notes, and calls upon the Scottish Executive to act upon, the recommendations contained within the 17th Report 2001 of the Health and Community Care Committee, Report on Hepatitis C (SP Paper 398).

After debate, the motion was agreed to (DT).

2. Ministerial Statement: The Minister for Education and Young People made a statement on the education of looked after children.

3. Business Motion: Euan Robson, on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau, moved S1M-2589—That the Parliament agrees—

(a) as a revision to the Business Programme agreed on 19 December 2001—

Thursday 10 January 2002

after "Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party Debate on Scotland’s Economy", insert—

followed by Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party Motion on the subject of S1M-2577 Alex Fergusson: Foot-and-Mouth Disease - Public Inquiry

(b) the following programme of business

Wednesday 16 January 2002

2.30 pm Time for Reflection

followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

followed by Scottish National Party Debate on Scotland's Railways

followed by Standards Committee Motion

followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

5.00 pm Decision Time

followed by Members' Business – debate on the subject of S1M-2588 Mr Alasdair Morrison: Renewable Energy in the Western Isles

Thursday 17 January 2002

9.30 am Stage 1 Debate on the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Bill

followed by Financial Resolution in respect of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Bill

followed by Business Motion

followed by Adoption and Children Bill - UK Legislation

2.30 pm Question Time

3.10 pm First Minister's Question Time

3.30 pm Stage 1 Debate on the Marriage (Scotland) Bill

followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

5.00 pm Decision Time

followed by Members' Business – debate on the subject of S1M-2472 Richard Lochhead: Promoting Aberdeen as Europe’s Energy Capital

Wednesday 23 January 2002

2.30 pm Time for Reflection

followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

followed by Stage 1 Debate on the Budget (Scotland) Bill

followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

5.00 pm Decision Time

followed by Members' Business – debate on the subject of S1M-2402 by Alex Fergusson: Research into Myalgic Encephalomyelitis

Thursday 24 January 2002

9.30 am Green Party / Scottish Socialist Party Business

followed by Business Motion

2.30 pm Question Time

3.10 pm First Minister's Question Time

3.30 pm Executive Business

followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

5.00 pm Decision Time

followed by Members' Business

(c) that Stage 1 of the Education (Disability Strategies and Pupils’ Records) (Scotland) Bill be completed by 8 March 2002

and (d) that the Justice 1 Committee and Justice 2 Committee report to the Local Government Committee by 21 January 2002 on the Police Pensions (Pension Sharing on Divorce) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2001 (SSI 2001/459) and the Police Pensions (Additional Voluntary Contributions and Increased Benefits) (Pension Sharing) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2001 (SSI 2001/461); and

that the Justice 2 Committee reports to the Justice 1 Committee by 21 January 2002 on the Legal Aid (Scotland) Act 1986 (Availability of Solicitors) Regulations 2001 (SSI 2001/464); and

that the Justice 1 Committee and the Justice 2 Committee report to the Health and Community Care Committee by 22 January 2002 on the National Health Service (Scotland) (Superannuation Scheme and Additional Voluntary Contributions) (Pension Sharing on Divorce) Amendment Regulations 2001 (SSI 2001/465).

The motion was agreed to (by division: For 33, Against 2, Abstentions 0).

4. Question Time: Questions were answered by the First Minister and other Ministers and junior Scottish Ministers.

5. Scotland’s Economy: Miss Annabel Goldie moved S1M-2582—That the Parliament notes with grave concern that in excess of 20,000 jobs were lost throughout the Scottish economy in 2001 and that the Scottish economy has failed to perform as well as the UK economy; further notes that the higher business rate poundage in Scotland relative to England is having a damaging effect on the competitiveness of Scotland’s economy, and calls upon the Scottish Executive to restore as a matter of urgency a business rate poundage uniform with the rest of the UK as part of a sustained effort to reduce burdens of tax and regulation, which are hindering the creation of jobs and prosperity in Scotland, and demonstrate to the business community a commitment to restoring growth and competitiveness to the Scottish economy.

The Minister for Enterprise, Transport and Lifelong Learning moved amendment S1M-2582.2 to motion S1M-2582—

Leave out from first "notes" to end and insert—

"endorses the work undertaken by the Executive in its handling of the Scottish economy within the context of a continuing stable UK economic performance; commends the work undertaken by the Executive to help improve performance of the Scottish economy as set out in The Way Forward: Framework for Economic Development in Scotland and A Smart, Successful Scotland: Ambitions for Enterprise Networks commends the work undertaken by the Executive to assist Scottish business to prepare for the introduction of the euro, and supports the Executive in its aim to increase the sustainable growth of the Scottish economy over the long term."

Andrew Wilson moved amendment S1M-2582.1 to motion S1M-2582—

Leave out from "restore" to end and insert—

"target a doubling of Scotland’s trend rate of growth as a key policy objective and bring forward proposals to deliver this including a business taxation regime and a policy environment that place Scotland at a competitive advantage in Europe, beginning with the removal of Scotland’s business rate disadvantage compared to the rest of the United Kingdom."

After debate, amendment S1M-2582.2 was agreed to ((DT) by division: For 65, Against 49, Abstentions 2). As a result, amendment S1M-2582.1 was pre-empted.

The motion as amended was then agreed to ((DT) by division: For 65, Against 50, Abstentions 1).

Accordingly, the Parliament resolved—That the Parliament endorses the work undertaken by the Executive in its handling of the Scottish economy within the context of a continuing stable UK economic performance; commends the work undertaken by the Executive to help improve performance of the Scottish economy as set out in The Way Forward: Framework for Economic Development in Scotland and A Smart, Successful Scotland: Ambitions for Enterprise Networks commends the work undertaken by the Executive to assist Scottish business to prepare for the introduction of the euro, and supports the Executive in its aim to increase the sustainable growth of the Scottish economy over the long term.

6. Foot-and-Mouth Disease - Public Inquiry: Alex Fergusson moved S1M-2577—That the Parliament calls on the Scottish Executive to instigate a full open public inquiry, either under its aegis or preferably as a distinct part of a full UK inquiry, into the impact of, preparations for and handling of the foot-and-mouth disease outbreak in Scotland, and the economic recovery measures put in place by the Executive and Her Majesty’s Government, in order to ensure that lessons are learnt about the appropriate response to any future outbreak.

The Minister for Environment and Rural Development moved amendment S1M-2577.1 to motion S1M-2577—

Leave out from "calls on" to end and insert—

", recognising the need for independent scrutiny of the handling of the foot-and-mouth disease outbreak, supports the participation of the Scottish Executive in the Royal Society Inquiry, the Anderson "Lessons Learnt" Inquiry and the Royal Society of Edinburgh Inquiry and believes that these inquiries provide ample opportunities for all interested parties to contribute to the process."

 

 

Fergus Ewing moved amendment S1M-2577.2 to motion S1M-2577—

Leave out from "calls on" to end and insert—

"welcomes the cross-party approach towards the policy adopted in Scotland to eradicate the foot-and-mouth disease epidemic, but believes that it is essential that all lessons are learned by means of a full, open and independently convened public inquiry in Scotland and that it is important to monitor closely the impact of the crisis upon the whole Scottish economy and, in particular, upon those regions of Scotland most affected by the outbreak."

After debate, amendment S1M-2577.1 was agreed to ((DT) by division: For 65, Against 51, Abstentions 0). As a result, amendment S1M-2577.2 was pre-empted.

The motion as amended was then agreed to ((DT) by division: For 64, Against 51, Abstentions 0).

Accordingly, the Parliament resolved—That the Parliament, recognising the need for independent scrutiny of the handling of the foot-and-mouth disease outbreak, supports the participation of the Scottish Executive in the Royal Society Inquiry, the Anderson "Lessons Learnt" Inquiry and the Royal Society of Edinburgh Inquiry and believes that these inquiries provide ample opportunities for all interested parties to contribute to the process.

7. Decision Time: The Parliament took decisions on items 1, 5 and 6 as noted above.

8. Strategic Planning in Fife: The Parliament debated S1M-2404 in the name of Iain Smith—That the Parliament notes the strong opposition from Fife Council, residents and community councils in Fife to the proposals contained in the Scottish Executive’s consultation document Review of Strategic Planning which would split Fife for strategic planning purposes between the cities of Dundee and Edinburgh; further notes that Fife Council is the only local authority area proposed to be split for strategic planning purposes; recognises that Fife Council shares boundaries with other major public sector agencies such as Scottish Enterprise Fife, Fife NHS Board and Kingdom of Fife Tourist Board which, together with its unique geography, make Fife ideally suited for strategic planning as a single unit, and therefore considers that the Scottish Executive should review its proposals in the light of the consultation and retain Fife as a single strategic planning area.

 

The meeting closed at 5.56 pm.

P E Grice

Clerk of the Parliament

10 January 2002

Appendix

(Note: this Appendix does not form part of the Minutes)

 

 

Committee Reports

The following Report was published on 10 January 2002

Subordinate Legislation Committee 1st Report 2002: Report on Subordinate Legislation (SP Paper 489)


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