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Daily Political Media Summary: 5 May 2009

Reform Scotland

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Daily Political Media Summary: 5 May 2009

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All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is blue and underlined.

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 Economy

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Recession: The recession in Europe will be deeper and more widespread than feared, a report has warned. The European Commission has been forced to dramatically revise its growth estimates for 2009, suggesting EU economies will shrink by 4 percent in 2009, twice that which was originally expected. (Scotsman page 9, Times page 1, Telegraph Business p1, FT page 1, page 2, Press and Journal page 10)

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 Crime

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Fiscal penalties: Not a penny has been paid of nearly 15,000 fiscal fines issued to offenders in Scotland last year, prompting widespread condemnation of the system and demands for an inquiry. (Scotsman page 1, Press and Journal page 7)

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 Transport 

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Trains: Rail passengers have complained that people using smaller stations along the west coast main line route are losing out badly after a reduction of up to three-quarters in the number of stopping trains. (Herald page 1, Analysis page 4)

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 Health

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Swine Flu: Fresh fears were sparked last night as the World Health Organisation stood poised to raise the global swine flu alert to pandemic level. Nine new cases were confirmed in the UK, which brings the total number of British people infected to 27. (Herald page 2, Telegraph page 7, Guardian page 1,  Press and Journal page 1, Courier page 1)

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 Education

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Exams: Thousands of schoolchildren across Scotland are preparing for exams that get under way today. About 160,000 students will sit exams ranging from Standard Grades to Advanced Highers over the next five weeks. (Scotsman page 7, Herald page 7)

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 Boarding School: A scheme that would see vulnerable children sent to boarding schools could help transform the lives of Scottish youngsters, school leaders claim. Scottish boarding head teachers supported the call of the chairman of the Boarding Schools Association, who said that such a programme, already taking place in England, should be implemented in Scotland. (Scotsman page 23)

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 Politics

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Labour Party infighting: Labour MPs yesterday called for a halt to party infighting as the party’s deputy leader, Harriet Harman, was forced to deny she had ambitions to become Prime Minister. (Scotsman page 2, Herald page 1, Guardian page 4, Press and Journal page 9, Courier page 1, Daily Mail page 2)

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 Whisky Tax: The crisis over the duty hike for whisky last year brought no action or intervention from Scottish Secretary Jim Murphy, said the SNP last night. (Herald page 6)

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 Royal Mail: David Cameron holds Gordon Brown’s political life in his hands after the Prime Minister’s decision to risk a Commons defeat over the Royal Mail sell-off next month, senior government officials reportedly believe. (Times page 6, Telegraph page 11, Guardian page 1, Press and Journal page 8)