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Chamber and committees

Meeting date: Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Local Government and Communities Committee 04 December 2019

Agenda: Subordinate Legislation, Non-Domestic Rates (Scotland) Bill: Stage 2, Subordinate Legislation


Subordinate Legislation

Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Ancillary Provision) Regulations 2019 [Draft]

The Convener (James Dornan)

Good morning and welcome to the 31st meeting in 2019 of the Local Government and Communities Committee. I remind everyone present to turn off their mobile phones. We have received apologies from Kenneth Gibson.

Agenda item 1 is consideration of the draft Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Ancillary Provision) Regulations 2019. The committee will take evidence on the instrument, for which I welcome Kevin Stewart, who is the Minister for Local Government, Housing and Planning, and Jean Waddie, who is the planning reform co-ordinator at the Scottish Government.

The Minister for Local Government, Housing and Planning (Kevin Stewart)

Thank you, convener, and good morning. The regulations will simply correct some cross-referencing and typographical errors in the 2019 act. They are subject to affirmative procedure because they will amend the text of primary legislation. I will leave it at that.

The Convener

Thank you.

Andy Wightman (Lothian) (Green)

How often do corrections have to be made to primary legislation?

Kevin Stewart

I cannot answer that question off the top of my head. Ms Waddie has been involved in a number of bills, so she might have an idea in relation to the bills that she has dealt with.

Jean Waddie (Scottish Government)

I cannot answer that question. As members know, a lot of changes were made to the Planning (Scotland) Bill. There was a lot of back and forth, so a few things were missed as we went along.

Andy Wightman

Does the minister accept that, when errors have been made, we should accept them with good grace and deal with them?

Kevin Stewart

Typographical errors should be accepted with good grace. It is somewhat different if huge elements are missing from amendments or if due cognisance is not taken of the unintended consequences of proposals.

Graham Simpson (Central Scotland) (Con)

I will try to assist Mr Wightman in my role as the convener of the Delegated Powers and Law Reform Committee. All such matters come through our committee. To be fair to the Government, the number of mistakes—let us call them that—that we have picked up has been reducing under the watchful eye of Graeme Dey, the Minister for Parliamentary Business and Veterans, who will appear before the committee very soon.

Kevin Stewart

In fairness to the bill team, who worked exceptionally hard, a number of things came back to us as a result of the huge number of amendments that were agreed to at stage 3 of the Planning (Scotland) Bill, which is now an act. I know that Mr Simpson and his committee keep a close eye on all such matters, but in this case we are talking about a few minor errors.

The Convener

On that basis, we move to agenda item 2, which is formal consideration of motion S5M-19958. I invite the minister to move the motion.

Motion moved,

That the Local Government and Communities Committee recommends that the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019 (Ancillary Provision) Regulations 2019 [draft] be approved.—[Kevin Stewart]

Motion agreed to.

The Convener

The committee will report on the instrument in due course. Does the committee agree to delegate authority to me, as convener, to approve a draft report for publication?

Members indicated agreement.

The Convener

Thank you very much.

09:04 Meeting suspended.  09:05 On resuming—