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Reform Scotland News: 22 August 2013

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

Scottish ties with northern England: Alex Salmond has unveiled plans to create closer links with the north of England, arguing that this area often feels more “ignored” by the government at Westminster than Scotland does.  The First Minister pointed to growing anger over the “imbalance” in the UK’s economy. (Scotsman page 8, Herald page 6, Press and Journal page 12)

 Yes Scotland: Yes Scotland has admitted paying academic Dr Elliot Bulmer to write a pro-independence newspaper article in the Herald.  The revelation has apparently come out in emails that are subject to a police investigation into hacking. (Sun page 2, Times page 2, Telegraph page 1, Courier and Advertiser page 2)

 Henry McLeish: Michael Kelly in the Scotsman criticises Henry McLeish’s recent comments against the Better Together campaign.

Ed Miliband: John McTernan in the Scotsman comments that despite recent criticism from within his own party, Ed Miliband is well positioned to help Labour win the next general election.

Economy

Public spending: Figures published by the Office for National Statistics have shown that an increase in UK public spending in July led to a £1.3billion increase in public-sector borrowing. (Scotsman page 12)

Mis-selling bill: Banks and credit card issuers are facing a bill of about £1.3bn to compensate victims of the financial services industry latest mis-selling scandal. Today regulators are expected to announce a plan under which 16 financial institutions will repay consumers who were mis-sold insurance for identity theft and credit card fraud. (Financial Times page 1)

Government projects: Bill Jamieson in the Scotsman comments on government projects which have gone wrong, both at a Scottish and UK level.

UK exports: Sarah O’Conner in the Financial Times comments on why Britain’s exports have not risen despite a decrease in the value of the pound making them more competitive.

Edinburgh airport: Around 100 jobs are to be created in an expansion project at Edinburgh airport, Scotland busiest. The expansion plans include a new security area and shops. (Daily Express page 2)

Health

Highland GPs: NHS Highland is reportedly struggling to fill six GP posts which will serve remote and rural areas. (Scotsman page 19)

 Local government

Aberdeen city centre: Sir Ian Wood has reportedly reissued his offer of £50 million towards the redevelopment of Aberdeen city centre as long as the council comes up with a new project by the end of the year. (Scotsman page 23, Press and Journal page 1)

Justice

Under-15s searched: Campaigners have warned that the record number of people being stopped and searched in Scotland could alienate the young, following 23,000 children being searched by officers since April. (Herald  page 1)

Domestic abuse: Domestic abuse figures across Scotland are expected to rise by up to 30% because some police forces were recording less than 1 in 5 as crimes. Some forces were recording the abuses as incidents which led to them not being reported in the official crime statistic. (Herald page 2)

Transport

Northern transatlantic flights: Direct transatlantic flights will be available from smaller regional airports in the north of the UK for the first time next spring. Flights to the east of the US and Canada will be provided from Glasgow, Bradford, Leeds and Newcastle. (Financial Times page 2) 

 A9 dualling: Church ministers have joined calls the A9 to be made a dual carriageway before the SNP’s target of 2025. A total of 67 people died on the route between 2006 and 2010 giving it the highest fatality rate north of the border. (Scottish daily express page 9, Daily Record page 21)