1st Meeting, 2003 (Session 1)

Wednesday 8 January 2003



Bruce Crawford

Robin Harper

Angus MacKay

Maureen Macmillan

Fiona McLeod

Bristow Muldoon (Convener)

Nora Radcliffe (Deputy Convener)

John Scott

Elaine Thomson


Also present: Des McNulty (Deputy Minister for Social Justice)


The meeting opened at 9.39 am.


1. Items in private: The Committee agreed to take agenda item 7 in private.

2. Building (Scotland) Bill: The Committee considered the Bill at Stage 2 (Day 2).

The following amendments were agreed to without division: 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 67, 68, 69, 70, 104, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 105, 76, 77, 78, 79, 106

Amendment 107 was moved and, with the agreement of the Committee, withdrawn.

The remaining amendments were not moved.

Sections 22, 23, 25, 27, 29, 30, schedule 4, sections 31, 33, 35 and 36, schedule 5, sections 39, 40, 42, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 52 and 53, schedule 6, section 54 and the long title were agreed to without amendment.

Sections 24 and 26, schedule 3, sections 28, 32, 34, 37, 38, 41, 43, 50 and 51 were agreed to as amended.

The Committee completed Stage 2 consideration of the Bill.

3. Subordinate Legislation: The Committee considered the following negative instruments—

The Smoke Control Areas (Authorised Fuels) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2002 (SSI, 2002/527)

The Removal and Disposal of Vehicles Amendment (Scotland) Regulations 2002 (SSI, 2002/538).

The Committee had nothing to report on the instruments but agreed to write to the Scottish Executive to seek clarification on a matter arising from SSI 2002/527.

4. Subordinate Legislation: The Committee considered the following affirmative instrument—

The Scotland Act 1998 (Transfer of Functions to the Scottish Ministers etc.) Order 2003 (draft).

The Committee had nothing to report to the lead Committee. The Committee however agreed to write to the Scottish Executive to seek clarification on a matter arising from the instrument, and that this response should be provided to the lead Committee and copied to the Transport and the Environment Committee in advance of the lead Committee’s consideration of the instrument.

5. Public Petitions: The Committee considered the following petitions—

PE 346 and PE 369. The Committee considered a letter from the Minister for Health and Community Care in response to correspondence from the Committee relating to petition PE 346 by Scotland Opposing Opencast and petition PE 369 by the Confederation of UK Coal Producers. The Committee agreed to conclude its consideration of the petitions by referring the aspects of the petition relating to public health to the Health and Community Care Committee, and that all relevant correspondence and documents should be made available to that Committee.

PE 422, PE 430 and PE 454. The Committee considered letters from CoSLA and Sportscotland in response to correspondence from the Committee on issues relating to petitions PE 422 by Mr James Docherty on protection for school playing fields, PE 430 by Mrs M Glendinning on the sale of school playing fields and PE 454 by Mr Peter Watson on the sale of playing fields. The Committee agreed to seek clarification on the Executive’s position on the protection offered in England and Wales by section 77 of the Schools Standards and Framework Act 1988. The Committee also agreed to write to the Executive highlighting various points raised in the correspondence from Sportscotland.

PE 425 by Mrs Anne-Marie Glashan on planning procedures for telecommunications developments. The Committee agreed to invite the Public Petitions Committee to refer formally the petition to the Committee. The Committee also agreed to consider the petition as part of its forthcoming examination of telecommunications developments.

PE 508 by Mr Philip Graves on the implementation of Environmental Impact Assessments and PAN 58 guidelines. The Committee agreed to raise the issues highlighted in the petition with the Minister for Social Justice and the Scottish Executive Chief Planner at a forthcoming briefing on planning issues.

PE 517 by Mr Rob Kirkwood on environmental and planning issues relating to water treatment plants. The Committee agreed to write to the Scottish Executive to seek its view on a number of issues arising from the petition. The Committee also noted that following receipt of this response it would be open to the Committee to refer the petition to the Public Petitions Committee so that it can be reallocated to a future Committee at the start of the next parliamentary session.

6. Rail Inquiry: The Committee agreed a motion for the proposed debate at a meeting of the Parliament on the Committee’s report on the rail industry in Scotland.

7. Telecommunications Developments (in private): The Committee considered a paper from the Parliament’s Information Centre on a possible approach to the Committee’s examination of developments following the publication of its report into telecommunications developments in 2001. The Committee agreed a programme of evidence-taking as part of its examination of telecommunications developments.

The meeting closed at 11.50 am.

    Callum Thomson
    Clerk to the Committee