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Press Release - Experts Raise Concerns over “Confusing” Settlement

Constitutional experts have raised concerns over the division of responsibilities between the UK and Scottish Governments, following the publication of draft legislation on greater devolution to Scotland. Academics have suggested that the draft legislation raises more questions than it answers in several areas.

The most evident of these areas of confusion is the concept of ‘no detriment’, the notion that the actions of one government should not harm another.

On Devolution

And so it has arrived: draft legislation on further powers for the Scottish Parliament, published before Burns Night, in accordance with the timetable set out in the wake of “The Vow”.  

There appear to be two clear faultlines emerging.  The first, which has the most resonance in Scotland, is over the issue of whether powers devolved over welfare are to be fully within the remit of the Scottish Government’s powers or whether the UK Government will retain some influence in this sphere.

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The draft legislation published in response to the report of the Smith Commission makes much of the concept of 'no detriment' - that the actions of one government should not harm another. However, explains CCC Director Michael Keating, that is considerably easier said than done. 

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Scotland in the United Kingdom: An enduring settlement - released today

Today sees the announcement of the draft legislative clauses, widely trailed in the media, resulting from the Smitth Commission. We should know the details of the government's proposals by around half past ten and, if the media reports are to be believed, the Prime Minister's thoughts on the subject by early afternoon.

We'll be releasing commments from our experts throughout the day on Twitter and will post them here and on Facebook. CCC fellow Malcolm Harvey will also be sharing his thoughts over at The Conversation.

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