Colin Beattie: As a member of the Public Audit and Post-legislative Scrutiny Committee, I have heard a great deal about arm’s-length foundations. Is it not the case that ALFs allow colleges to protect revenue that would otherwise have been lost following the Office for National Statistics reclassification? How much of the funds that were transferred into ALFs have been returned to the colleges?
Colin Beattie: 4. To ask the Scottish Government what the outcome was of the recent ministerial visit to Munich to discuss future trade with the EU. (S5O-00264)
Colin Beattie: Does the minister agree that establishing the trade hub in Berlin underscores the Scottish Government’s clear commitment to Europe?
Colin Beattie: In these uncertain times, it is more crucial than ever that the Scottish Government remains wholly committed to investing in and developing a strong, sustainable economy, and to increasing business-driven innovation and our international competitiveness, while reducing inequality. For those reasons, I am pleased to see the official results of the Government’s end-to-end review of the...
Colin Beattie: Does the minister share my astonishment that the Scottish Government has repeatedly been criticised by the Tories for taking advice from a wide range of independent experts, for pledging to publish that advice in full and for promising to give the people of Scotland a chance to make their views heard?
Colin Beattie: What measures is the Scottish Government taking to expand passenger capacity on Scotland’s railways?
Colin Beattie: As the cabinet secretary rightly pointed out, Scottish education has very strong foundations. Does he agree with the director general of the Confederation of British Industry, who recently said: “On qualifications, Scotland has a proud record”, and added that “Scotland’s Curriculum for Excellence is leading the way”?
Colin Beattie: What contingency plans might the UK Government have put in place following the referendum to ensure that technology and other resources are in place to continue seamless payments to farmers and other recipients of EU financial support after the expiry of the two-year exit period?
Colin Beattie: 3. To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the meeting of the joint ministerial working group on welfare on 16 June 2016. (S5O-00063)
Colin Beattie: Is the working relationship between the Scottish Government and the Department for Work and Pensions sufficiently strong to satisfy the cabinet secretary that robust data provision will ensure that welfare benefits transition is seamless and that no Scottish recipient will be disadvantaged?
Colin Beattie: Over the past decades, it has become very evident that education is one of the primary routes for young people to reach their life goals and fulfil their aspirations. Colleges and universities play an essential and irreplaceable role in that; they can help to ensure that, whatever a person’s background, they will have the same life opportunities as anyone else. As a result, it is more...
Colin Beattie: 5. To ask the Scottish Government what measures it is taking to help reduce waiting times at GP surgeries. (S5O-00005)
Colin Beattie: The cabinet secretary may be aware that many surgeries in my constituency of Midlothian North and Musselburgh are closed to new patients, yet housebuilding continues apace. Does the cabinet secretary agree that there is a need to balance infrastructure against development to ensure that constituents’ medical needs can be met?
Colin Beattie: To ask the First Minister what support the Scottish Government will provide to the 88 workers who are likely to be affected by the First bus proposal to cease operations in East Lothian and close its depots in Musselburgh and North Berwick.
Colin Beattie: took the oath.
Colin Beattie: 5. To ask the Scottish Government what progress it is making in reducing the education attainment gap. (S4O-05660)
Colin Beattie: As the cabinet secretary may know, the area of Mayfield and Easthouses in my constituency has historically been ranked among the 10 most deprived in educational terms, according to the Scottish index of multiple deprivation. What specific steps will be taken to help the areas that are ranked in that percentile?
Colin Beattie: To ask the First Minister what steps the Scottish Government is taking to support the 107 workers in Greggs bakery in Loanhead in my constituency, whose jobs are under threat as a result of the company’s decision to close that facility?
Colin Beattie: 8. To ask the Scottish Government what discussions it has had with the United Kingdom Government regarding the impact that leaving the European Union could have on Scotland’s fishing and farming communities. (S4O-05571)
Colin Beattie: Will the cabinet secretary highlight some of the benefits that EU membership brings to Scotland’s farming and fishing communities?