Local MSP John Finnie, Scottish Greens who is also his party’s Island Communities Spokesperson has given a cautious welcome to the Scottish Government’s Islands Bill as it was debated in parliament.
The stage one parliamentary debate is an opportunity to debate the general principles of the bill, with any amendments to the bill being considered at stages two, and three.
John Finnie said:
“Our island communities face many unique challenges and I am pleased that this important piece of legislation has been brought forward which should ensure ‘island proofing’ is given due consideration as part of all future government policy.
“Greens support calls for appropriate devolution to island authorities, ensuring day to day decision which impact people’s lives are made as close to them as possible. We are keen to see all local communities have more control over their resources.
“Marine licensing powers are of course particularly relevant to islands and I’m keen to hear more from the Scottish Government on how they intend to deliver on this complex matter.
“Some of the most resilient and supportive communities in Scotland are within islands and I believe this bill has the potential to be a step in the right direction of empowering these island communities in a manner they deserve.”
The Orkney News has many articles about the Islands Bill. Included is a link to one and other related Bills progressing through the Scottish Parliament.