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MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS

Vol. 1, No. 44 Session 2

Meeting of the Parliament

Thursday 8 January 2004

 

Note: (DT) signifies a decision taken at Decision Time.

The meeting opened at 9.30 am.

1. Delivering a Quick, Effective Youth Justice System: The Minister for Justice (Cathy Jamieson) moved S2M-762-That the Parliament recognises the importance of dealing quickly, firmly and effectively with the minority of young people who offend; acknowledges that progress has been made by local authorities and partners in the statutory and voluntary sectors to encourage rehabilitation, prevent reoffending and tackle and reduce youth crime, but recognises that further work must be done to ensure that the quality of life in our communities continues to improve.

Nicola Sturgeon moved amendment S2M-762.2 to motion S2M-762-

Leave out from "acknowledges" to end and insert-

"however notes with concern the contents of the Audit Scotland report, Dealing with offending by young people, published in November 2003, that too many children placed on supervision for reasons of offending are not receiving the required level of service and considers that efforts to encourage rehabilitation and prevent re-offending are being undermined as a result; further notes that the shortage of places in secure units constrains the ability of children's hearings to make the most appropriate decisions, and considers that the Scottish Executive must guard against complacency and redouble its efforts to provide both the leadership and resources that will enable its partners in local authorities and the voluntary and statutory sectors to make the progress required to deliver an appreciable reduction in youth crime."

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 37, Against 77, Abstentions 1).

Miss Annabel Goldie moved amendment S2M-762.1 to motion S2M-762-

Insert at end;

"; in particular considers that at the heart of effective youth justice is the Children's Hearings system; calls, therefore, for the Children's Hearings system to be better resourced with a wider range of disposals in order that hearings can perform a more effective role in relation to youth justice and assist in the wider function of community mediation, and further calls on the Scottish Executive to alleviate the burden on the Children's Hearings system by sending persistent 14 and 15-year-old offenders to youth courts, while keeping 16 and 17-year-olds in adult courts."

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 13, Against 101, Abstentions 0).

The motion was then agreed to ((DT) by division: For 84, Against 0, Abstentions 31).

2. First Minister's Question Time: Questions were answered by the First Minister (Mr Jack McConnell).

3. Question Time: Questions were answered by Ministers and junior Scottish Ministers.

4. Improving Scotland's Homes: The Minister for Communities (Ms Margaret Curran) moved S2M-761-That the Parliament welcomes the report of the Housing Improvement Task Force and believes that its adoption will make a major contribution to the delivery of good quality, sustainable and affordable housing for all in Scotland.

Shona Robison moved amendment S2M-761.3 to motion S2M-761-

Insert at end-

"and calls on the Scottish Executive to bring forward a timetable for the implementation of the task force recommendations and to ensure that the necessary resources are made available for their implementation."

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 51, Against 63, Abstentions 1).

Mary Scanlon moved amendment S2M-761.1 to motion S2M-761-

Leave out from "welcomes" to end and insert-

"notes the report of the Housing Improvement Task Force; recognises that housing stock transfer to community-based housing associations gives tenants far more say in the way their housing is run, giving tenants greater rights and responsibilities, and therefore believes that, to improve the standard of housing for everyone in Scotland, it is necessary to step up the process of devolving control of housing from local authorities to community-based housing associations, housing co-operatives or a range of other providers to give tenants a real choice of landlord and a real say in the management of their homes."

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 15, Against 100, Abstentions 0).

Frances Curran moved amendment S2M-761.2 to motion S2M-761-

Leave out from "will" to end and insert-

"and implementation will make a contribution to the delivery of good quality, sustainable and affordable housing for all in Scotland; notes, however, the net loss of 103,000 homes from local authority housing stock since 1997; believes that such ongoing loss is unsustainable, and calls for a replacement of the right to buy scheme with a right to rent discount scheme to reward long-term tenants while protecting local authority and housing association stock and for the implementation of a programme of sustained investment in local authority housebuilding to build at least 10,000 new units a year to reverse the disastrous decline in the availability of affordable social housing."

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 13, Against 102, Abstentions 0).

The motion was then agreed to (DT).

5. Decision Time: The Parliament took decisions on items 1 and 4 as noted above.

6. Horse Racing Industry in Scotland: The Parliament debated S2M-474 in the name of Susan Deacon-That the Parliament recognises the significant contribution that the horse racing industry makes to the economy, generating up to £125 million annually and providing the equivalent of 1,700 full-time jobs; commends the success of the racing industry in continuing to expand and develop, recognising its contribution to local economies and tourism; notes that there is widespread concern regarding the potential implications of the proposed Office of Fair Trading (OFT) rule 14 notice on the deregulation of the British horse racing industry and, in particular, on its likely impact on Scotland's five racecourses, Ayr, Hamilton Park, Kelso, Musselburgh and Perth, each of which is independently owned and managed with profits generated ploughed back into the sport for long-term growth, and considers that the Scottish Executive should work with representatives of the racing industry to identify opportunities to promote and develop the industry and to explore the possible implications of the OFT ruling.

The meeting closed at 6.03 pm.

P E Grice

Clerk of the Parliament

8 January 2004

 

Appendix

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

 

Committee Reports

The following Reports were published on 8 January 2004-

Health Committee, 1st Report 2004 (Session 2): Report on Subordinate Legislation (SP Paper 74)

 

Audit Committee, 1st Report 2004 (Session 2): Report on Individual Learning Accounts in Scotland (SP Paper 72)

Subordinate Legislation Committee, 1st Report 2004 (Session 2): Report on Subordinate Legislation (SP Paper 75)