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ERD/S2/05/20/M

20th Meeting, 2005 (Session 2)

Tuesday 28 June 2005

Present:

Sarah Boyack (Convener)
Alex Johnstone
Maureen Macmillan
Nora Radcliffe
Rob Gibson
Richard Lochhead
Mr Alasdair Morrison
Mr Mark Ruskell (Deputy Convener)

Apologies were received from Karen Gillon.

The meeting opened at 2.03 pm.

1. Item in private: The Committee agreed to take item 5 in private.

2. Inquiry into rural development: The Committee took evidence from—

Ross Finnie MSP, Minister for Environment and Rural Development;
Malcolm Chisholm MSP, Minister for Communities; and
Allan Wilson MSP, Deputy Minister for Enterprise and Lifelong Learning.

3. European issues: The Committee took evidence on the Scottish Executive’s priorities for the environment and rural development portfolio for the forthcoming UK Presidency of the EU from—

Ross Finnie MSP, Minister for Environment and Rural Development.

4. Subordinate legislation: The Committee considered the following negative instruments and agreed, being content with the instruments, to make no recommendation to the Parliament—

the Air Quality Limit Values (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2005, (SSI 2005/300);
the Loch Crinan Scallops Several Fishery Order 2005, (SSI 2005/304);
the Nitrate (Public Participation etc.) (Scotland) Regulations 2005, (SSI 2005/305);
the Prevention and Monitoring of Cetacean Bycatch (Scotland) Order 2005, (SSI 2005/330);
the Plant Protection Products (Scotland) Regulations 2005, (SSI 2005/331); and
the Eggs (Marketing Standards) (Enforcement) (Scotland) Regulations 2005, (SSI 2005/332).

The Committee considered the following negative instruments and agreed to write to the Minister for Environment and Rural Development seeking further information on a number of issues raised during discussion and to consider the instruments again at its next meeting—

the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (Variation of Schedule) (Scotland) Order 2005, (SSI 2005/308);
the Genetically Modified Organisms (Transboundary Movements) (Scotland) Regulations 2005, (SSI 2005/316); and
the Financial Assistance for Environmental Purposes (Scotland) Order 2005, (SSI 2005/324).

5. Environmental Levy on Plastic Bags (Scotland) Bill (in private): The Committee considered its approach to the Bill at Stage 1 and agreed—

the timetable for Stage 1 consideration of the Bill;
to issue a call for written evidence;
a programme for oral evidence;
to seek further information on equal opportunities issues from the member in charge of the Bill, Mike Pringle MSP; and
to delegate authority to the Convener to approve any claims under the witness expenses scheme arising from Stage 1 consideration.

The meeting closed at 4.23 pm.

Mark Brough
Clerk to the Committee