Mr Phil Gallie: Is my hon. Friend aware of the policy that has been adopted in Strathclyde, under which privately owned houses that were previously council owned have been rated for council tax one band higher than they would have been rated were they still in local authority ownership? Does my hon. Friend agree that every owner of such a house should appeal?
Mr Phil Gallie: rose—
Mr Phil Gallie: The Minister was asked about recruiting more police but that is pointless unless they are backed by the actions of sheriffs and judges in Scotland, for example. The public perceive inconsistencies in sentencing but nobody seems to review the performance of sheriffs and judges and, no doubt, magistrates in England. Perhaps my right hon. and learned Friend will bear that in mind.
Mr Phil Gallie: I agree with my right hon. Friend that this is a most regrettable situation. I sympathise with the hon. Member for Greenock and Port Glasgow (Dr. Godman), but I must point out that the problem extends into Ayrshire, albeit not to such a degree. Does my right hon. Friend agree that application for trust status for hospitals demands very stringent quality processes to be built into business...
Mr Phil Gallie: Given the tragedy of Warrington, the mayhem of Bishopsgate, regular disasters throughout the United Kingdom, particularly Northern Ireland, and the fact that the IRA has boasted that no security levels are immune to them, will my right hon. Friend consider a debate on a means of resolving those problems?
Mr Phil Gallie: Will the hon. Gentleman give way?
Mr Phil Gallie: Will the hon. Gentleman give way, having referred directly to me?
Mr Phil Gallie: Will the hon. Lady give way?
Mr Phil Gallie: The hon. Lady said that the comments by the hon. Member for Hamilton (Mr. Robertson) depressed her. Is she depressed by the fact that the hon. Gentleman continually refers to the business community in derogatory terms? Does he not see business men as wealth and job creators who have a part to play in Scotland's well being and perhaps in the committee?
Mr Phil Gallie: I agree with much of what my hon. Friend says. I agree also with the comments of the Minister, who has to deal with the practicalities of the issue. If I may add to my hon. Friend's argument, I find it difficult to understand how local authority representatives, who frequently complain of the burdens of their local authority involvement, will be able to take on their shoulders this weighty...
Mr Phil Gallie: Will the hon. Gentleman clarify how the Committee of the Regions could assist the fishermen to whom he refers, given the powers that it has?
Mr Phil Gallie: Does my right hon. Friend agree that there is no better commendation of the White Paper than the words of the hon. Member for Glasgow, Maryhill (Mrs. Fyfe) who, at a recent Scottish Grand Committee meeting, pleaded for the Minister responsible for health to be present? For the benefit of those on the Opposition Front Bench, will my right hon. Friend explain that the implementation of...
Mr Phil Gallie: On a point of order, Madam Speaker. As the fifth Member of the five referred to by the hon. Member for Midlothian (Mr. Clarke), and despite having bounced up and down like a peerie during Scottish Question Time, am I to suppose that there is something wrong with me, since I have not been called a second time?
Mr Phil Gallie: Given that the Labour party has changed its mind so many times in recent years, is it not possible that parties in other parts of Europe will eventually see the light and join the Conservative party in taking a realistic approach?
Mr Phil Gallie: rose—
Mr Phil Gallie: I, too, have a constituency in the north of the country. If all those people are going to suffer, as the right hon. Gentleman suggests, why does he still push his carbon tax? Did the right hon. Gentleman and his hon. Friends support the coal industry recently? Would not a carbon tax hit all the people to whom he referred? Would it not amount to a great penalty on the coal industry?
Mr Phil Gallie: My hon. Friend talks of conservation. In the Clyde, the fishermen took heed of that. They imposed their own weekend ban over a number of years. Now that means that they have not got days at sea recorded in 1991. Will my hon. Friend confirm that consideration will be given to that point and that he will take positive account of the days when they could have been at sea which were not recorded...
Mr Phil Gallie: Does my hon. Friend agree that it is the great tradition of the Royal Navy to consider crew and family welfare as a priority? Does he acknowledge that many of the crew who man our nuclear deterrent submarine force are home-based in Scotland? On that basis, does he believe that it would be a great advantage to ensure that the maintenance of the Trident fleet remains in Scotland?
Mr Phil Gallie: The hon. Member for South Shields (Dr. Clark) referred to diversification in the defence industry, and to the Rosyth dockyard and the overhaul of underground carriages. Was it not the Government's far-sighted vision, when they privatised the dockyard, which gave it that ability? Did not Opposition Members oppose that privatisation?
Mr Phil Gallie: I welcome the verdict of the jury which vindicated the actions of three police officers in bringing to task those responsible for the Guildford bombings. Can my right hon. Friend find time for a debate on compensation for those officers, who have suffered traumatic experiences?