Committee (4th Day)

Part of Scotland Bill – in the House of Lords at 5:00 pm on 15th March 2012.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Lord Sassoon Lord Sassoon The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury 5:00 pm, 15th March 2012

No, my Lords, I do not believe that it has exposed a flaw. The decisions which under the Bill, if and when enacted, would be for the Scottish Government are quite clear and the Scottish Government will bear the fiscal consequences of those decisions. What I have described is made quite clear at greater length in the November 2010 Command Paper, Strengthening Scotland's Future. If parts of the UK tax system are not devolved but remain the responsibility of the UK Administration, then, if something changes to the detriment of Scotland, the no-detriment principle will kick in, the block grant will be adjusted and, as set out in the Command Paper, the Office for Budget Responsibility will work out all the numbers and establish the fiscal impact. Of course, the adjustment would not necessarily go one way-it would depend on the nature of the change. We have talked this afternoon as though everything is always going to go in one direction. However, this could conceivably be a two-way detriment that had to be adjusted through the block grant.