Reform Scotland News: 10 May 2011


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


In addition to the newspaper stories outlined below, further news coverage can be found online at BBC News Scotland, STV News and Sky News.



Tory Leadership: Annabel Goldie has announced that she will stand down as leader of the Scottish Conservatives, becoming the third Scottish party leader to quit in the aftermath of the SNP’s victory in last week’s Holyrood elections. (Scotsman page 4, Herald page 7, P&J page 1 & 8, Courier page 9, Telegraph page 6, Times page 6, Record page 7, Sun page 2, Express page 2, Mail page 4)


Alcohol Pricing: The SNP has announced plans to make a minimum price for alcohol a key priority during its second term in office. The move would set a 45p/unit minimum price, increasing the costs of some alcoholic beverages. (Scotsman page 6, Herald page 2, P&J page 11)


Presiding officer: Tomorrow elections will be held to appoint the new Presiding Officer of Holyrood. Possible candidates include Patricia Ferguson (Labour), Christine Graham (SNP), Tricia Marwick (SNP), Tavish Scott (Lib Dem), Hugh Henry (Labour), Duncan McNeil (Labour). However, there are concerns that the SNP’s overall majority will mean that the party will use its overwhelming majority to ensure a Nationalist is selected for the role. (Scotsman page 8, Herald page 6, P&J page 8, Courier page 9, Telegraph page 6, Sun page 2, Express page 2, Mail page 4)


RAF closures: Ministry of Defence officials are expected to recommend to ministers that RAF Leuchars is handed over to the army and RAF Lossiemouth is saved. The MoD has denied claims that the Holyrood election result will impact their decision on the closures. (Scotsman page 2; Herald page 7, P&J page 3, Courier page 8, Sun page 2)



Co-operative Energy: Tthe Co-operative Group is to expand into the sale of electricity and gas by creating a new firm, Co-operative Energy, which it hopes will rival the established ScottishPower and Scottish and Southern Electric. (Scotsman page 11, Telegraph page B5)


Energy Bills: Nearly 1.5 million homes in Scotland face even higher fuel bills this winter after Centrica, the owners of British Gas, warned of a likely price increase – just three months after it reported its biggest ever profits.( Herald page 4, Courier page 13, Telegraph page 12, Guardian page 8, Express page 5)


Banking Compensation: The British Bankers’ Association (BBA) has accepted the High Court’s decision that new Financial Services Authority (FSA) rules on the mis-selling of payment protection insurance (PPI) could be applied retrospectively, meaning that millions of customers who have wrongly been sold insurance when taking out a bank loan will between them receive billions of pounds in compensation. (Scotsman page 15, Herald page 12, Courier page 13, FT page 1, Telegraph page B1, Times page 4, Record page 2, Sun page 2, Mail page 2)


House Prices: Property prices plummeted at the fastest annual rate for 18 months in April as low consumer confidence continued to undermine the housing market. According to a report out today from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) Scotland, house prices in Scotland are likely to fall further despite a rise in the number of home sales last month. (Scotsman page 18, Herald page 4, P&J page 7, Courier page 3, Mail page 2)


Local Government

Aberdeen city council scandal: Gordon Leslie, an Aberdeen city councillor, has faced calls to stand down after admitting to “cruising” in a red light district in Aberdeen. He has had to abandon his bid to become a Liberal Democrat MSP, but he still remains a councillor. (Scotsman page 19, Herald page 12, P&J page 7, Express page 19)



Healthy Friendships: A new study, carried out by the centre for Health Equity Studies in Sweden and focused on people born at Aberdeen Maternity Hospital between 1950 and 1956, has found that people with no friends at school are likely to suffer from ill-health later in life. (Scotsman page 23, Mail page 30)