Alexander calls for Scottish fiscal independence

14 Jun 01
The Scottish Executive should have complete fiscal independence, a leading professor at Strathclyde University has argued.

15 June 2001

Professor Alan Alexander told delegates at the CIPFA conference this week that Scotland should push for an 'innovative and imaginative form of federalism'.

'I don't think that the settlement in Scotland is suitable,' Alexander said. 'Scotland should have fiscal devolution as well as policy devolution in a way which is politically and fiscally sensitive.'

He praised many of the policies introduced by the Scottish Executive. 'Devolution in Scotland has seen a promise for free personal care for the elderly, the abolition of tuition fees and an agreed deal on teachers' salaries and conditions of employment,' he added.

Also speaking at the seminar, Mike Collier, chief executive of One North East, the regional development agency for Northeast England, said he welcomed the debate on regional assemblies but added that it would be disappointing if there were a 'one size fits all' approach.

'I think we are only at the start of devolution,' he added. 'But I believe it will lead to new direction and diversity rather than division and disintegration.'


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