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02/11/2015

Scottish Government considering land commission

Words: Laura Edgar

Scottish environment minister Dr Aileen McLeod has said she is keen to “consider further improvements” to the land reform proposals.

McLeod said improvements under consideration include establishing a permanent Scottish Land Commission.

The commission would end the stop-start nature of land reform in Scotland and have the potential to deliver further reforms, according to the Scottish Government.

Speaking ahead of the Rural Affairs, Climate Change and Environmental committee meeting yesterday, McLeod said: “This ambitious and radical bill is a vital next step in the land reform journey. The measures in the bill make important changes to specific rights and responsibilities over land, including provisions to increase the transparency of land ownership, which have never before been seen in this country.

“I have followed the committee’s consideration of the bill carefully and I look forward to discussing the provisions of the bill with them later today. I am open to ideas and suggestions relating to Scotland’s land reform journey and will continue to work with all those with an interest to ensure that our land benefits the people of Scotland for generations to come.”

Craig McLaren, director of RTPI Scotland, said: “RTPI Scotland welcomes the Scottish Government’s commitment to listen and consider further improvements to the current land reform proposals. We look forward to hearing about plans for a permanent Scottish Land Commission, especially as we have already said that it would be good to explore what new bodies could work with local partners to better coordinate and provide infrastructure, deliver development and assemble land across Scotland.”

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