Reform Scotland Media Summary 12 January 2015

Reform Scotland
Daily Political Newspaper Summary: 12 January 2015

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
Jim Murphy: Lord George Robertson and business figures are among those who donated to Jim Murphy’s Scottish Labour Leadership bid (Sunday Herald page 14)Mr Murphy has revealed a new constitution for the party that deliberately avoids backing for Union as the party reaches out to supporters who believe in independence (Scotland on Sunday pages 1, 10&11, Sunday Times page 14, Times page 20)

The Scottish Labour leader is considering reforms to Labour’s selection procedures by ending ‘protected places’ for list members (Sunday Herald page 15)

Brian Monteith in the Scotsman suggests that Jim Murphy has got Labour back on the front foot as he sets out to win back the hearts and minds of voters who deserted them in the referendum

Labour-SNP Deal: Ed Miliband has left the door open for a deal with the SNP after the general election after refusing four times on The Andrew Marr show to rule out a coalition (Herald page 6, Scotsman page 1 National page 6, Sun page 2, Times page 20, Daily Telegraph page 12, Daily Mail page 2, Guardian page 13, P&J page 14, Courier page 16)

David Cameron:  In a speech today, David Cameron will call for voters to support the Conservatives in order for them to tackle the deficit (Express page 2)

Scottish Progressive Party:  A new political party, the Scottish Progressive Party will be launched to be a new voice for the Scottish Right with the Tories dismissing the threat (Express page 6, Times page 14, Magnus Linklater in the Times)

Universal Credit:  Civic society organisations have sent an open letter to the Work and Pensions Secretary calling for the roll-out of Universal Credit due next month to be suspended as it would cut across future welfare changes recommended by the Smith Commission (Sunday Herald page 12)

Women:  According to figures released by the SNP, women, and in particular new mothers, suffer disproportionately from Coalition welfare cuts (Sunday Herald page 12, Scotland on Sunday page 15, P&J page 14)

House of Lords:  The SNP will this week demand that the abolition of the House of Lords be made a government priority after the General Election (Sunday Herald page 12)

Leader Debates:  The SNP has called for a re-think of Ofcom’s decision not to list them as a major UK party (Sunday Herald page 15, Sunday Times page 14)

SNP:  Two of the Councillors who were suspended from the party for setting fire to a copy of the Smith Commission report have been kept on the list of approved candidates for future elections (Scotland on Sunday page 13)

Home Rule: in the Herald David Torrance suggests that putting Home Rule into practice may not be the best option

Inheritance Tax:  Chancellor George Osborne has vowed to slash inheritance tax and ruled out a rise in VAT if the Conservatives win the General Election (Sunday Times pages 1&4)

Fracking:  Richard Dixon in Scotland on Sunday says the SNP have to take a stand against fracking before it is too late.

Strike Reform:
 Unions express anger at Tory plans to curb strikes by setting a 40% support threshold (Sunday Herald page 17, Scotland on Sunday page 15, National page 6)

Charlie Hebdo Attack:  There is widespread coverage as around a million people take part in a march in Paris in support of free speech in the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo attack (Humza Yousaf in the Sunday Herald, Anas Sarwar in Scotland on Sunday, Sunday Times page 22, Herald page 1, Scotsman pages 1,4-7, National pages 1-6, Daily Mail pages 6-11, Guardian page 1-4, P&J page 18&19, Courier page 13)

David Cameron is looking at the possibility of reviving the so called snooper’s charter following the attacks (Herald page 5, Guardian page 5)

Economy
North Sea Oil:  Euan McColm in Scotland on Sunday suggests that Nicola Sturgeon has failed to appear in control as the price of oil has fallen, allowing Jim Murphy a political opportunity to become a champion for the industry

Alex Salmond in the Courier suggests that the price of oil is of less importance than the cost of failing to act now to safeguard employment and investment

Scotland’s oil sector could suffer if MPs don’t back proposals for a new regulator without delay (Sunday Times page 12)

The industry is set to receive an emergency tax cut in the chancellor’s March budget (Herald page 6, Scotsman page 11, National page 26, P&J page 15)

Land and building tax proposals: Scottish ministers have been urged to drop plans for a property tax hike on properties between £250k and £1m as campaigners say this will slow the housing market (Herald page 2)

Budget: Holyrood’s Finance Committee is calling on the Scottish and UK governments to agree Scotland’s block grant before the Scottish Parliament votes on John Swinney’s budget next month (Herald page 2, P&J page 15)

City Link: the Scottish affairs select committee will meet workers and sub-contractors in Glasgow today (Herald page 3, Scotsman page 2, National page 27)

Growth Slow Down: research for the Bank of Scotland’s PMI index suggests that the growth rate in Scotland’s private sector economy slowed to a new two year low in the final quarter of 2014, but firms continued to increase orders and create jobs (Herald page 24)

Inflation: Inflation fell to under 1 percent last month further delaying an interest rate rise according to figures set to be revealed tomorrow (Express page 2)

Justice
Lockerbie Bomber: the son of the man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing has joined a facebook group protesting his father’s innocence to show the posthumous appeal is backed by the family (Herald page 11)

Women’s prison: Carolyn Leckie in the National says that a therapeutic approach to rehabilitation is needed for women who offend, not a bigger prison
EducationPrincipal salaries: university leaders have come under fire for significant increases in remuneration through salaries and bonuses (Herald page 2)

Health
NHS Crisis:  Five of Scotland’s health boards are seeing delays of at least three times the target A&E waiting time of four hours with operations being cancelled or delayed (Sunday Herald page 18, Sunday Times page 1, Herald page 8, National page 12)

Jim Murphy has suggested that the SNP are beginning to sound like Tory Ministers at Westminster and must apologise to patients who were not treated within the legal waiting time of 12 weeks (Scotsman page 10, Express page 6, Daily Record page 2, Sun page 2, Daily Telegraph page 8)

Ebola:  A medic has claimed that hospitals in Lanarkshire were unprepared for ebola when Scottish nurse Pauline Cafferkey returned home (Sunday Herald page 11)Assisted Dying:  Leading pathologist Professor Anthony Busuttil has spoken out against plans to legalise assisted dying (Sunday Times page 4)

NHS Fund Increase: the Scottish government have announced an extra £65m for the Scottish NHS from April this year as a result of Barnett consequentials (Herald page 6National page 13, Times page 15, Daily Mail page 16, Courier page 16)

Air pollution: Friends of the Earth Scotland have claimed that air pollution is causing a public health crisis in Scotland (Herald page 3, Scotsman page 12, P&J page 6)

Local Government
Sheltered Housing Cuts: housing associations are calling on Glasgow City council to reverse plans for 40 per cent cuts to sheltered housing (Herald page 9)