Scots ‘devo-max’ legislation published

22/01/2015

The Westminster government has published draft legislation building on Lord Smith of Kelvin’s report into increased powers for Scotland.

A Command Paper including a whole host of new powers for the Scottish Parliament has been issued and includes new powers relating to transport infrastructure and energy.

One of the main changes is the transfer of responsibility for the Crown Estate’s economic assets in Scotland, which include the seabed on which offshore windfarms are built.

However, the agreement ensures that such devolution “is not detrimental to UK-wide critical national infrastructure in relation to matters such as defence & security, oil & gas and energy”.

On transport, the draft legislation proposes devolving more power over rail franchise agreements. It will allow public sector operators to bid for and operate rail franchises in the country – provided the services both start and end within Scotland.

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