Scotland Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:32 pm on 27th January 2011.

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Photo of Michael Moore Michael Moore The Secretary of State for Scotland 12:32 pm, 27th January 2011

First, I pay tribute to the right hon. Gentleman's distinguished career of campaigning on these issues and to all the hard work and effort he has put into that over many years. The fundamentals of devolution since 1999 mean that the Scottish Parliament and then the Scottish Government are able to decide how to spend all the revenue that comes to them, whether it be directly through the grant or, to use a shorthand term, as a result of the Barnett consequentials. The hon. Gentleman is, of course, entitled to draw a distinction between how the money is spent south of the border and how it is spent north of the border. On occasions, the advantage might be the other way round, but I am afraid that that is the essence of devolution-it is for them to decide. The Bill enhances those principles rather than claws anything back.