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Meeting of the Parliament

Thursday 15 January 2009

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

The meeting opened at 9.15 am.

1. Health Boards (Membership and Elections) (Scotland) Bill: The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing (Nicola Sturgeon) moved S3M-3162—That the Parliament agrees to the general principles of the Health Boards (Membership and Elections) (Scotland) Bill.

Ross Finnie moved amendment S3M-3162.1 to motion S3M-3162—

insert at end—

“but, in so doing, noting the terms of the Health and Sport Committee’s Stage 1 report, calls on the Scottish Government to bring forward, ahead of Stage 3, firm proposals for the piloting of a variety of alternative schemes to improve public participation and shares the committee’s view that such agreement to the general principles should not be taken to pre-empt any decision that the Parliament may later be asked to take on the rolling out of direct elections to health boards nationwide.”

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

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

Accordingly the Parliament resolved—That the Parliament agrees to the general principles of the Health Boards (Membership and Elections) (Scotland) Bill but, in so doing, noting the terms of the Health and Sport Committee’s Stage 1 report, calls on the Scottish Government to bring forward, ahead of Stage 3, firm proposals for the piloting of a variety of alternative schemes to improve public participation and shares the committee’s view that such agreement to the general principles should not be taken to pre-empt any decision that the Parliament may later be asked to take on the rolling out of direct elections to health boards nationwide.

2. Health Boards (Membership and Elections) (Scotland) Bill: Financial Resolution: The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing (Nicola Sturgeon) moved S3M-2937—That the Parliament, for the purposes of any Act of the Scottish Parliament resulting from the Health Boards (Membership and Elections) (Scotland) Bill, agrees to any expenditure of a kind referred to in paragraph 3(b)(iii) of Rule 9.12 of the Parliament’s Standing Orders arising in consequence of the Act.

The motion was agreed to (DT).

3. General Question Time: Questions were answered by Cabinet Secretaries and Ministers.

4. First Minister’s Question Time: Questions were answered by the First Minister (Alex Salmond).

5. Themed Question Time: Questions on Health and Wellbeing were answered by the Cabinet Secretary and Ministers.

6. Forth Crossing: The Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Sustainable Growth (John Swinney) moved S3M-3214—That the Parliament notes the Scottish Government’s choice of conventional capital funding for construction of the Forth Replacement Crossing and welcomes the fact that Scotland’s biggest infrastructure project for a generation will be delivered without the need for tolls.

Des McNulty moved amendment S3M-3214.3 to motion S3M-3214—

leave out from “and welcomes” to end and insert—

", expresses concern that the lack of prior consultation with the UK Government raises questions over the delivery of the project on time and on budget, and considers that the new bridge should be capable of operating on a multi-modal basis to ensure continuity of provision for public transport as well as private vehicles.”

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 43, Against 64, Abstentions 16).

Derek Brownlee moved amendment S3M-3214.1 to motion S3M-3214—

insert at end—

“and calls on the Scottish and UK governments to work together to ensure that the new crossing is delivered at the earliest possible opportunity.”

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

Jeremy Purvis moved amendment S3M-3214.4 to motion S3M-3214—

leave out from “and welcomes” to end and insert—

", condemns the actions of the Scottish Government in bringing before the Parliament a proposal for the Forth Replacement Crossing (FRC) that has no agreed funding package; notes that under the Scottish Government’s plans “a significant number of other very deserving capital projects will have to be displaced to make room for the FRC”, and therefore calls on the Scottish Government to bring before the Parliament immediately a prioritised list of capital projects between 2009 and 2016.”

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 57, Against 66, Abstentions 0).

After debate, the motion as amended was agreed to ((DT) by division: For 121, Against 2, Abstentions 0).

Accordingly the Parliament resolved—That the Parliament notes the Scottish Government’s choice of conventional capital funding for construction of the Forth Replacement Crossing and welcomes the fact that Scotland’s biggest infrastructure project for a generation will be delivered without the need for tolls, and calls on the Scottish and UK governments to work together to ensure that the new crossing is delivered at the earliest possible opportunity.

7. Decision Time: The Parliament took decisions on items 1, 2 and 6 as noted above.

8. Future of the Bull Hire Scheme: The Parliament debated S3M-2932 in the name of Jamie McGrigor—That the Parliament notes the proposals to abolish the current Bull Hire Scheme for crofters; is aware of genuinely felt concerns among crofters over this proposal and the potentially more costly and inconvenient options that might replace the scheme; believes that the current Bull Hire Scheme has widespread support within the crofting sector and has played an extremely important part in maintaining the quality of cattle stock in the crofting counties, and further believes that some form of bull hire scheme is in the best interests of crofters and stock quality in the crofting counties.

9. Motion without Notice: Jamie McGrigor moved without notice that, under Rule 8.14.3, the debate be extended by up to 30 minutes. The motion was agreed to.

The meeting closed at 5.58 pm.

P E Grice
Clerk of the Parliament
15 January 2009


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

Subordinate Legislation

Negative Instruments

The following instruments were laid before the Parliament on 15 January 2009 and are subject to annulment—

The Animal By-Products (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2009 (SSI 2009/7)

laid under section 2(2) of and paragraph 1A of Schedule 2 to the EC Act 1972

The Plant Health (Import Inspection Fees) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2009 (SSI 2009/8)

laid under section 2(2) of the EC Act 1972 and section 56(1) and (2) of the Finance Act 1973

Committee Reports

The following report was published on 15 January 2009

Rural Affairs and Environment Committee, 1st Report 2009 (Session 3): Stage 1 Report on the Flood Risk Management (Scotland) Bill (SP paper 191)