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REFORM SCOTLAND NEWS: 19 OCTOBER 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. 

 

Politics

Liam Fox: Cabinet Secretary Sir Gus O’Donnell published his report into Liam Fox’s connections with Adam Werrity yesterday.  Sir Gus said that the former defence secretary had breached the ministerial code as he should have declared the details of his working relationship with Adam Werrity to his permanent secretary at the MOD.  Sir Gus also suggested that Liam Fox’s actions in allowing Mr Werrity access to his diary, “posed a degree of security risk” both to Dr Fox and to his officials. (Scotsman page 1, David Maddox in the Scotsman, John McTernan in the Scotsman, Herald page 1, Express page 4, Mail page 10, Max Hastings in the Mail, Mirror page 6, P&J page 5, FT page 2, Telegraph page 10, Guardian page 1 and page 11, Sun page 2)

 

Charities, PR companies, trade unions and think-tanks are expected to be swept up in new proposals to impose rules on lobbyists who try and influence government ministers in the wake of the Adam Werrity saga.  Plans include a compulsory register for “professional” lobbyists.  (Times page 1)

 

EU referendum: David Cameron is facing a backbench rebellion as many Tory MPs are pushing for a referendum on the UK’s continued membership of the EU.  The issue is to be debated in the House of Commons on 27 October after more than 100,000 people signed a petition calling for a referendum. (Scotsman page 2, Times page 15, Express page 5, Lord Willoughby de Broke in the Express, Mail page 1, FT page 2, Telegraph page 1, Benedict Brogan in the Telegraph)

 

Russian spy: Katia Zatuliveter, a former parliamentary researcher in the House of Commons, has been accused of starting a four-year affair with Lib Dem MP Mike Hancock, a member of the Defence Select Committee, because he was “potentially vulnerable”. MI5 has alleged that Ms Zatuliveter passed on sensitive information to the Russian Foreign Intelligence Agency. Ms Zatuliveter strongly denies the allegation of spying or of having any links to Russian Intelligence agencies and is fighting against her deportation which is based on the grounds that she poses a national security risk. (Scotsman page 12, Express page 1, Mail page 1, Mirror page 1, P&J page 8, Telegraph page 1, Guardian page 16, Sun page 21)

 

Defence: Further coverage of General Sir Richard Dannatt, the former Chief of the General Staff, calling on Alex Salmond to be “honest” with the electorate and produce a detailed defence policy for an independent Scotland prior to holding his referendum. (Scotsman page 2, Mail page 5, Telegraph page 6)

 

Independence inquiries: Alex Salmond has claimed that the Scottish affairs select committee at Westminster does not have a mandate to discuss independence following the committee’s decision to hold two inquiries on “a potential referendum on separation for Scotland”.  (Scotsman page 2, Herald page 6, Times page 14, Telegraph page 1, Alan Cochrane in the Telegraph)

 

Labour leadership: Glasgow South MP Tom Harris has secured the required number of nominations to stand for the leadership contest to replace Iain Gray. (Scotsman page 10)

 

Malcolm Chisholm: Labour MSP Malcolm Chisholm has called on his party to abandon its support for the Scotland Bill and instead support a wider transfer of powers from Westminster to Holyrood. (Times page 14)

 

Conservative leadership: Jackson Carlaw and Ruth Davidson, two of the four contenders to replace Annabel Goldie are interviewed in the Scotsman.

 

James Mitchell in the Scotsman comments that a new centre right party in Scotland could win new votes, but could also lead to a loss of seats if the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party continued to exist.

 

Murdo Fraser in the Mail outlines why he wants to win the leadership contest.

 

Tweeting MSPs: Green MSP Patrick Harvie has called for an end to the ban on MSPs tweeting at Holyrood  allowing for the ‘responsible use of mobile devices and social media’ in the debating chamber. This would be in line with the House of Commons where such devices and mediums have recently been allowed. (Herald page 6, Times page 17)

 

Economy

Inflation controversy: The UK government has reportedly refused to confirm whether benefits and state pensions will rise in line with the September inflation figure, which is the usual procedure.   Last month’s figure was 5.2 per cent, which could cost the government an additional £1.8bn.  Sir Mervyn King has signalled that inflation has hit its peak and will being to fall back. (Scotsman page 1, Bill Jamieson in the Scotsman, Herald page 6, Times page 7, Express page 1, Mail page 6, P&J page 5, FT page 1, Telegraph page 1, Guardian page 4, Sun page 4, Daily Record page 4)

 

Carbon capture: A £1billion carbon capture and storage project at Longannet, in Fife, has been shelved by the UK government. (Herald page 1)

 

HMRC: Six million people are expected to be contacted by HMRC saying they have overpaid tax by an average of £400 each, while a further 1.2 million face being told they have underpaid by an average of £600. (Mail page 1)

 

Transport

Driving penalties: Research by Brake has shown that 387 drivers in Scotland exceed the 12 point threshold for a driving disqualification but have evaded disqualification.  (Herald page 7, Mirror page 9, P&J page 10, Telegraph page 12)

 

Local Government

Aberdeen Union Terrace Gardens: Six of the world’s leading architects have unveiled designs to transform Aberdeen’s Victorian gardens into an “iconic” city centre landscape as part of a £140million project.  The project has provoked local controversy due to financial and aesthetic concerns. The final decision on the project will be made in November. (Scotsman page 24, Herald page 10, Times page 25, P&J page 7, Daily Record page 18)