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National Islands Plan

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 8th October 2019.

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Photo of Paul Wheelhouse Paul Wheelhouse Scottish National Party

Without any disrespect to Rhoda Grant, I point to the fact that the local authorities themselves have been encouraging us to develop an implementation plan. I recognise why she is asking the first part of her question. I know that communities are keen to see action taken quickly, and we will go as fast as we can, but we need to be able to prepare our actions properly and effectively and, as other members have mentioned, ensure that they are resourced

. The implementation plan is under way. I hope that it will not take a huge amount of time to prepare, as we work together with local authorities to address that.

Air traffic control is a hugely sensitive issue. I appreciate the impact that the new arrangements will have on particular individuals and families, and we are encouraging Highlands and Islands Airports to work with them to ensure that those arrangements work as effectively as possible for them and that there is as little disruption to their family life as possible.

The cabinet secretary Mr Matheson, or I, will be happy to meet Rhoda Grant to discuss that.