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Contents
A : Daily Business List
B : Business Programme
D : Oral Questions selected for answer
E : Written questions lodged
F : Motions and Amendments
G : Bills: Notices and Amendments
H : New Documents
K : Progress of Parliamentary Business

Business Bulletin No. 167 / 2003

Thursday 4th December

Section A : Daily Business List

  

Meeting of the Parliament

9.30 am Scottish National Party Debate on the Financial Powers of the Parliament-

S2M-697 Mr John Swinney: Financial Powers of the Parliament-That the Parliament recognises that, in order to be properly accountable to the electorate, it should be responsible for raising its revenue as well as spending public money and agrees that making every country follow the same tax rules diminishes competitiveness by killing jobs and stifling growth.

The Presiding Officer has selected the following amendments

S2M-697.3 Mr Andy Kerr: Financial Powers of the Parliament-As an amendment to motion (S2M-697) in the name of Mr John Swinney, leave out from second "that" to end and insert, "the significant benefit that Scotland gains from being part of the United Kingdom and notes that public expenditure in Scotland is at record levels and that this is helping to deliver the commitments in the Partnership Agreement to "growing Scotland's economy; delivering excellent public services, supporting stronger, safer communities and developing a confident, democratic Scotland."

S2M-697.2 David McLetchie: Financial Powers of the Parliament-As an amendment to motion (S2M-697) in the name of Mr John Swinney, leave out from "recognises" to end and insert "notes that it will only regain the confidence of the people of Scotland if it addresses the issues of most concern to them and that we must therefore concentrate on improving our public services, strengthening our economy and tackling crime; recognises nevertheless that the relative responsibilities of the Parliament and Westminster, including the financial relationship, should be the subject of review in light of experience; calls for such a review to be conducted within the context of making the devolved settlement work better and thereby strengthening the United Kingdom, and believes that the most appropriate mechanism for such a review would be a Royal Commission or similar independent inquiry appointed by the UK government."

S2M-697.1 Tommy Sheridan: Financial Powers of the Parliament-As an amendment to motion (S2M-697) in the name of Mr John Swinney, leave out from "making" to end and insert "acquiring additional powers to tax as well as spend would allow the Parliament to make the Scottish taxation structure much more progressive, begin the process of tackling the inequalities of wealth in Scotland and ending poverty; recognises, however, that fiscal autonomy alone would not overcome the serious distortions of the Scottish economy caused by our being part of the United Kingdom and will not allow the Parliament to stop the profligate expenditure of the UK government on immoral and illegal wars against the wishes of its people, nor the ongoing expenditure on weapons of mass destruction as typified by nuclear weapons at Faslane, and that it would still have insufficient fiscal powers to broaden its tax base and invigorate its economy and culture by adopting a policy of welcoming to Scotland the asylum seekers and other immigrants whom it requires, and further agrees that only an independent Scotland will give the Parliament the powers to tackle these economic and social issues."

followed by Scottish National Party Debate on European Parliament Seat Numbers-

S2M-694 Nicola Sturgeon: European Parliament Seat Numbers-That the Parliament supports the European and External Relations Committee's unanimous call for Scotland to retain eight Members of the European Parliament.

The Presiding Officer has selected the following amendment

S2M-694.1 Tavish Scott: European Parliament Seat Numbers-As an amendment to motion (S2M-694) in the name of Nicola Sturgeon, leave out from "supports" to end and insert "welcomes the accession of the 10 new member states of the European Union on 1 May 2004; notes that the elections to the European Parliament are a reserved matter; recognises that all 15 existing member states have agreed to reduce their quota of MEPs to enable the new member states to be represented on an equitable basis; notes the consequent reduction of United Kingdom seats in the European Parliament from 87 to 78, and considers that this is appropriate given the enlargement of the European Union."

12 noon First Minister's Question Time

1. Mr John Swinney: To ask the First Minister what issues will be discussed at the next meeting of the Scottish Executive's Cabinet. (S2F-402)

2. David McLetchie: To ask the First Minister when he next plans to meet the Prime Minister and what issues he intends to raise. (S2F-407)

3. Tommy Sheridan: To ask the First Minister what the Scottish Executive's position is in response to the programme Stop Chewin' the Fat and recent reports that Scottish children are among the most obese in the developed world. (S2F-415)

4. Bristow Muldoon: To ask the First Minister what economic benefits there would be from a bid to bring the Commonwealth Games to Scotland in 2014. (S2F-422)

5. Robert Brown: To ask the First Minister what action the Scottish Executive is taking to ensure the continuation of free bus travel for elderly people throughout the Strathclyde area. (S2F-412)

6. Fergus Ewing: To ask the First Minister how the Holyrood Inquiry will now obtain potential evidence from BBC Scotland, in light of the recent decision by BBC governors to endorse the decision by BBC Scotland to withhold the tapes of The Gathering Place from the inquiry. (S2F-433)

2.30 pm Question Time

1. Mrs Margaret Ewing: To ask the Scottish Executive what representations it will make to the Department of Trade and Industry regarding the loss of hydro subsidies in 2005 and any potential price rises for energy consumers in the Highlands and the north east. (S2O-870)

2. Patrick Harvie: To ask the Scottish Executive what provision it plans to make for the increasing number of destitute people in Scotland. (S2O-896)

3. Withdrawn

4. Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: To ask the Scottish Executive whether it will support charitable status for all Scotland's schools. (S2O-865)

5. Fergus Ewing: To ask the Scottish Executive whether it is satisfied that the arrangements currently made by BEAR Scotland Ltd for winter gritting of trunk roads in the north of Scotland are sufficient and safe. (S2O-872)

6. Dr Elaine Murray: To ask the Scottish Executive whether it has assessed the effectiveness of its policy of seizing the assets of suspected drug dealers. (S2O-893)

7. John Swinburne: To ask the Scottish Executive what action it is taking to meet its social justice target of making sure that older people are financially secure. (S2O-879)

8. Murray Tosh: To ask the Scottish Executive what action it is taking to measure the level of need for rented housing in each local authority area. (S2O-867)

9. Mr Kenny MacAskill: To ask the Scottish Executive when it last met the Strategic Rail Authority. (S2O-886)

10. Bristow Muldoon: To ask the Scottish Executive whether it will ensure that before any congestion charging proposal is approved it fully complies with the criterion of fair treatment in relation to road users. (S2O-889)

11. Ms Sandra White: To ask the Scottish Executive how the Scottish Ambulance Service prioritises emergency calls in the local community during sporting events. (S2O-890)

12. Frances Curran: To ask the Scottish Executive how charging patients with cancer in the Dumbarton area for their transport to Paisley for treatment is consistent with its social inclusion strategy. (S2O-907)

13. Alex Johnstone: To ask the Scottish Executive what role new hydro schemes will play in its plans to increase the generation of electricity by renewable means. (S2O-871)

14. Shona Robison: To ask the Scottish Executive what assistance can be provided to Dundee Football Club to help minimise job losses during the period of administration and restructuring. (S2O-905)

15. Iain Smith: To ask the Scottish Executive what action it is taking to assist in the improvement of golfing skills. (S2O-877)

16. Dr Sylvia Jackson: To ask the Scottish Executive what action it is taking to support carers. (S2O-891)

17. Mr John Home Robertson: To ask the Scottish Executive when it expects the new strategy for the provision of mental health services for the Lothian area to be announced. (S2O-873)

18. Colin Fox: To ask the Scottish Executive whether it will intervene to save the 7:84 Theatre Company (Scotland). (S2O-908)

19. Scott Barrie: To ask the Scottish Executive what discussions it has had with Scottish Water about the current level of water stocks. (S2O-900)

20. Donald Gorrie: To ask the Scottish Executive whether it plans to introduce a register of those convicted of domestic violence. (S2O-881)

21. Michael McMahon: To ask the Scottish Executive what strategy it has for assisting football clubs that find themselves in financial difficulties. (S2O-910)

22. Dennis Canavan: To ask the Scottish Executive what progress it is making on extending concessionary travel for senior citizens and people with disabilities (S2O-903)

23. Fiona Hyslop: To ask the Scottish Executive how many schools will need to have new classrooms built to meet its target to reduce class sizes in English and maths in S1 and S2 to a maximum of 20. (S2O-868)

24. Mark Ballard: To ask the Scottish Executive what its position is on the conclusion by the Agriculture and Environment Biotechnology Commission in its report GM Crops? Coexistence and Liability that GM crops cannot be grown commercially without contaminating conventional and organic crops. (S2O-899)

25. Withdrawn

26. Mr Brian Monteith: To ask the Scottish Executive when the Minister for Health and Community Care will next meet representatives of NHS Forth Valley and what issues will be discussed. (S2O-880)

27. Mr Jamie Stone: To ask the Scottish Executive how it will address any difficulties faced by the Highland education service regarding the recruitment of qualified secondary teachers for posts in remote areas such as Kinlochbervie. (S2O-888)

28. John Farquhar Munro: To ask the Scottish Executive how many people are on the waiting list for an organ transplant and what the average waiting time is for such an operation. (S2O-875)

29. Mr Mark Ruskell: To ask the Scottish Executive what progress it is making in determining the extent of illegal fishing outside European Union quotas and regulations. (S2O-897)

30. Margaret Smith: To ask the Scottish Executive what analysis it has made of the effectiveness of the Red Hook Community Justice Center in New York and the potential for the application of a similar scheme in Scotland. (S2O-864)

3.10 pm Executive Debate on Protecting Bathing Water Quality-

S2M-695 Allan Wilson: Protecting Bathing Water Quality-That the Parliament commends the results achieved during the 2003 bathing season for Scotland's designated bathing waters; welcomes the Scottish Executive's continued commitment to place the environment at the forefront of our strategy for protecting our bathing waters; acknowledges the importance of continuing to strive to achieve best value from the considerable investment that Scotland is applying, which in turn enhances Scotland's tourist credentials, and endorses the partnership approach taken by the Executive to work with all sectors to reduce pollution to the water environment.

The Presiding Officer has selected the following amendments

S2M-695.3 Roseanna Cunningham: Protecting Bathing Water Quality-As an amendment to motion (S2M-695) in the name of Allan Wilson, leave out from "welcomes" to end and insert "but believes that this is only one component in a larger concern about the marine environment that must be addressed urgently if the commitment to improving Scotland's natural environment overall is to be realised."

S2M-695.1 Alex Johnstone: Protecting Bathing Water Quality-As an amendment to motion (S2M-695) in the name of Allan Wilson, leave out from "commends" to end and insert "notes the continuing improvement in bathing water quality in Scotland but believes that further progress is now dependent on addressing the limitations of Scottish Water and the planning system."

S2M-695.4 Mr Mark Ruskell: Protecting Bathing Water Quality-As an amendment to motion (S2M-695) in the name of Allan Wilson, leave out from "commends" to end and insert "notes that while 2003 represents a record year for compliance with the Bathing Water Directive, some of Scotland's best bathing locations still fail to meet minimum standards; notes that compliance with the higher standards required by a revised European Directive will place further demands upon Scottish Water, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and other bodies with responsibilities for water quality; further notes that other legislation also impacts on Scotland's bathing water quality, and urges the Scottish Executive to be mindful of these considerations and of the importance of integrated coastal zone management when it consults on the best strategy for protecting and enhancing Scotland's coastline."

followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions-

S2M-686 Patricia Ferguson on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau: Business Motion-That the Parliament agrees-

(a) that Stage 1 of the Local Governance (Scotland) Bill be completed by 2 April 2004; and

(b) that Stage 1 of the National Health Service Reform (Scotland) Bill be completed by 5 March 2004.

5.00 pm Decision Time

followed by Members' Business

Debate on the subject of-

S2M-578 Trish Godman: Unity Enterprise Glasgow Airport-That the Parliament commends Unity Enterprise, a registered charity, which provides education, training, work experience and other assistance to young people and adults who have disabilities and disadvantages of one kind or another; notes in particular the helpful and practical assistance given by a group of such young people and adults to passengers at Glasgow Airport, especially the help shown to those individuals who have to use wheelchairs, in relation to shopping requirements, visits to cafes and toilets and the company offered to passengers in allocated areas; believes that this is both a comfort to travellers and offers a useful introduction to the workplace for those who are themselves disadvantaged, and therefore considers that the Scottish Executive and other appropriate agencies should do what they can in order to extend similar services to other airports, bus terminals and railway stations.

 

 

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