Results 121–140 of 692 for speaker:Mike Watson

Scottish Parliament: Gaelic Language (Scotland) Bill: Stage 1 (6 Mar 2003)

Mike Watson: Surely that was one of the longest interventions in this session of the Parliament.

Scottish Parliament: Gaelic Language (Scotland) Bill: Stage 1 (6 Mar 2003)

Mike Watson: I have the member's letter here, but I do not propose to quote from it. It is incumbent on any member who is introducing a bill to provide information on the possible costs, even if those costs are not quantifiable. We have a reasonable right to expect to see the best-case and worst-case scenarios. Members cannot expect the Executive or the Minister for Finance and Public Services to sign up...

Scottish Parliament: Gaelic Language (Scotland) Bill: Stage 1 (6 Mar 2003)

Mike Watson: As is well and publicly recorded, Bòrd Gàidhlig na h-Alba considered the bill and is generally supportive of it, but believes that the bill should be amended to cover all Scotland, and that it should create legal status for Bòrd Gàidhlig na h-Alba as a non-departmental public body. Of course, the board is already a non-departmental public body and is functioning effectively across the...

Scottish Parliament written answers — Museums: Museums (6 Mar 2003)

Mike Watson: The Executive has not, as yet, decided when to make an announcement on the action plan for the museum sector. Eighty-three detailed responses were received and are being carefully considered.

Scottish Parliament written answers — Scots Language: Scots Language (3 Mar 2003)

Mike Watson: The Scottish Executive considers the Scots language to be an important part of Scotland’s distinctive linguistic and cultural heritage. The implementation of many of the objectives and principles in Part II of the European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages are for other public bodies and institutions. The Scottish Executive would expect that due recognition would be given to these...

Scottish Parliament written answers — Sport: Sport (3 Mar 2003)

Mike Watson: Not at this time, but EventScotland, once it is established, will consider whether to support or bid for any women only major sporting events or events in which both men and women participate.

Scottish Parliament: European Year of Disabled People (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: I have enjoyed very much the contributions that members have made to the debate. I have to say that I am disappointed that nobody appears to have read the third clause of the motion. With the exception of my colleague Margaret Curran in her opening remarks, no one has mentioned either sport or culture and their role in assisting people with disabilities to move from being disabled to being...

Scottish Parliament: European Year of Disabled People (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: I am sorry, I have no time for interventions because I have many points to make. That information is in "Making Progress: Equality Annual Report", which was published last month. In the Executive, 4.2 per cent of employees in band A are registered disabled; 2.3 per cent in band B are registered disabled; and 1.3 per cent in band C are registered disabled. The target is 3 per cent, but...

Scottish Parliament: European Year of Disabled People (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: Another notable example is Sense Scotland's Helen Keller awards, which were launched in 1992. They form part of a development of art-based projects for people who are deaf-blind. This initiative offers compelling evidence that art and creativity can make a real difference to our quality of life, enabling creativity and self-expression in challenging circumstances. To those who have a tendency...

Scottish Parliament: Robert Burns (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: The Scottish Executive has not carried out an assessment of the economic impact of Burns's birthplace and artefacts. However, I understand that an analysis of figures from Scottish Enterprise, Ayrshire and Arran Tourist Board and industry bodies was undertaken recently by the World Bank on behalf of BBC Radio Scotland. That produced a figure of £157 million as annual income that is generated...

Scottish Parliament: Robert Burns (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: It is interesting that Phil Gallie, a representative of a party whose leader, Iain Duncan Smith, has advocated a 20 per cent cut in public expenditure, should be asking me to spend more. The Burns cottage museum is part of the Burns National Heritage Park, which has submitted an application to the Heritage Lottery Fund, which is being considered, for the upkeep and various other aspects of...

Scottish Parliament: Robert Burns (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: No it does not, because I have just outlined the resources that we are putting into Burns. We are putting in £300,000 to the projects that I mentioned and last year we put £100,000 into the Burns festival, which will play a major part in attracting people to Ayrshire. The Burns Heritage Trust is an independent organisation that is not funded directly by the Executive, which is why it has...

Scottish Parliament: Robert Burns (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: The "Burns and a' that" festival that I mentioned is being taken forward with the assistance of VisitScotland. Could we do more? Yes, I suppose that we could always do more; that is what we are trying to do. VisitScotland is directly involved, as are local enterprise companies and Scottish Enterprise, in taking forward our marketing of Burns. I will continue to ensure that VisitScotland has...

Scottish Parliament: National Galleries of Scotland Bill: Preliminary Stage (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: I should like to reinforce some of the comments of others. It is important that the issue of refurbishment is fully appreciated, and the speeches that I have heard suggest that it is. There will be obvious benefits to a wide range of groups that will make increased use of the galleries—for example, schools, students studying art, tourists from home or abroad, and, let us not forget, Auld...

Scottish Parliament: National Galleries of Scotland Bill: Preliminary Stage (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: The Executive welcomes and supports the private bill and I am pleased to see from the committee's report that the committee supports the bill, too. I thank Rhona Brankin, who is the committee's convener, and her colleagues John Young, Maureen Macmillan, Alasdair Morgan and Margaret Smith for their consideration of the bill. Rhona Brankin referred to the work that the National Galleries of...

Scottish Parliament written answers — Enterprise: Enterprise (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: The Executive, through its various agencies, stands ready to assist where it can the development of any industry.

Scottish Parliament written answers — Gaelic: Gaelic (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: We will continue with our policy of strengthening and extending Gaelic education at all levels. We believe this is the most effective means of increasing the number of Gaelic speakers. In addition, I will ask Bord na Gaidhlig to take account of the 2001 Census when they produce their first national plan for Gaelic. The Scottish Executive has provided the following translation: Leanaidh sinn...

Scottish Parliament written answers — Historic Scotland: Historic Scotland (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: Historic Scotland has had a long-term commitment to improving access – both physical and intellectual – to the built heritage, including in particular those properties in its own direct care. During 2003 Historic Scotland will be: spending £200,000 on improving access to its properties for visitors with disabilities; issuing a revised version of the brochure for visitors with...

Scottish Parliament written answers — Sport: Sport (27 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: The Scottish Executive has not been approached for financial assistance for the Edinburgh Marathon or the Loch Ness Marathon and, therefore, has no plans to support either event. It is for VisitScotland to consider the various approaches it receives for support against its objectives and priorities. I understand that VisitScotland decided against providing financial support for promotion of...

Scottish Parliament written answers — Special Educational Needs: Special Educational Needs (26 Feb 2003)

Mike Watson: From additional resources identified in 2002-03, the Scottish Executive has allocated £600,000 to sportscotland to establish a dowry for Scottish Disability Sport. This fund will allow Scottish Disability Sport to provide specialist support to ensure that the needs of children and young people with special needs are addressed as the Active Primary Schools and School Sports Development...

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