We Asked, You Said, We Did

Below are some of the issues we have recently consulted on and their outcomes.

We Asked

Respondants, specifically, for their views on the proposed draft SSIs: 

  • equivalency with SDLT provisions
  • potential effect on tax avoidance

We also requested general views on the proposed SSI and the broader potential impact on businesses

 

You Said

12 responses from organisations were received.  Broad support for the change to group relief avilability with requests to use Scots Law Terminology, widen provisions to cover any type of equivalent security arrangements located anywhere in the world and to apply the legislation retrospectively.

We Did

Considered the points made by respondants.  We revised the proposed SSI to reflect the request for use of Scots Law terminology,provided provision for arrangments constituted anywhere in the world and to provide avilability of the relief for all types of relevant security provision. 

We Asked

We asked for views on the eligibility criteria for the proposed Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (First-time Buyer) Relief and for technical comments on the accompanying legislation. 

We asked whether you agree, in general terms, with the Scottish Government’s intention that the relief be available where:

- The buyer is a natural person,

- A single dwelling is purchased for more than £145,000.

- The buyer is a first time buyer, who has never had a ‘major interest’ in a dwelling in Scotland or an equivalent interest in a dwelling situated anywhere else in the world.

- The buyer intends to occupy the dwelling as their main residence.

- The effective date of the transaction is on or after the date that the relevant legislation comes into force, and consistent with any final transitional provisions.

We also asked for evidence to inform the Equality Impact Assessment for the proposed legislation.

You Said

We received 21 responses, 8 from organisations and 13 from individuals. There was broad support for the proposed First-Time Buyer Relief, but with a range of comments on specific aspects of the proposal and draft legislation.

We Did

After due consideration of the consultation responses, the amended Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (First-Time Buyer Relief) (Scotland) Order 2018 will be laid before the Scottish Parliament.

We Asked

We asked for your views on proposed changes to the fees charged for the Inspections and production of Plant Health movement documents.

You Said

We received 8 responses all from organisations.  The majority agreed that the fees should be increased.  Concerns were raised about the prosed implementation date of 31 March 2018, as it falls part way through the export season for some crops.  Due to the variety of crops and the differing export seasons it is not possible to completely avoid this.  To ensure fairness and to minimise the impact of these changes to already agreed export agreements the Scottish Ministers have agreed to delay implementation until 1 June 2018.

We Did

We have fully considered all of the responses.  The responses have been published.  The new fee structure will now come into force on 1 June 2018.

We Asked

For your views on the detailed policy proposals for the key themes to be included in the forthcoming Education (Scotland) Bill. These themes include:

  • Establishing a Headteachers' Charter to define headteachers’ responsibilities as leaders of learning in schools and set out the support they can expect;

 

  • Providing the legislative underpinning for the establishment of Regional Improvement Collaboratives;

 

  • Improving parental and community engagement in school life and learning;

 

  • Promoting Ensuring that the views of children and young people are considered and that they have an opportunity to participate in decisions about school life and learning.

 

  • Establishing an Education Workforce Council to take on the responsibilities of the General Teaching Council for Scotland and the Community Learning and Development Standards Council and to register other education professionals.

You Said

870 responses were received from a wide range of interested parties including individual teachers and parents, parent councils, teacher groups, local authorities, third sector organisations, teaching unions, and other professional organisations.  Responses covered a range of views including support for and concerns about the proposals together with a number of suggestions.

We Did

Analysis of the consultation responses was carried out by the independent firm Why? Resrach. The final report of was published on 30 April 2018 and can be found here:

http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2018/04/6098

Your views will inform the drafting of the Education Bill which will be introduced to Parliament during the current parliamentary year.

We Asked

For your views on a draft code of practice on the exercise of powers by constables to search for cash and/or listed assets under sections 289 and 303C of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

You Said

Seven responses were received - four from individuals and three from organizations. Main themes discussed included prior approval and the accessibility of the code.

We Did

We have carefully considered the responses and made changes to the draft code as appropriate.

We Asked

1. Do you agree that the current allocation (1000 tonnes) for the North Sea stock is the right amount?

2. Do you agree that the additional allocation (300 tonnes) for the western stock should be reduced to 50 tonnes?

3. Do you agree with the Scottish Government’s proposal to establish handline mackerel as a fishery open to all 10mu licences and therefore remove all Handline Mackerel Entitlements from licences?

4. Do you agree with the arrangements for the current quota allocation pools for the NS mackerel stock? Do you think that the allocation shares between these pools should change?

5. Should all non-sector vessels (under and over 10m in length) have access to the inshore mackerel fishery?

You Said

Support was strong for most proposals bar the reduction in western allocation and opening access to the fishery for over 10m vessels.

Please read the analysis report for fuller details.

We Did

1. NS mackerel allocation will be 1,000 tonnes.

2. WS mackerel allocation will be reduced to 100 tonnes.

3. Access to the fishery will be open to all Scottish, non-sector, 10mu vessels.

All handline mackerel entitlements will be removed from licences by 1 May 2018.

4. Allocation and management by geographic pools will continue as per 2017 (i.e. monthly limits).

5. No expansion of access for non-sector, over 10m vessels.

We Asked

For your views on possible changes to standards required for fire and smoke alarms in Scottish Homes. We proposed extending the current minimum safe standards in private rented housing to other tenures. There will be a two year period for compliance once the regulations are in force and it is intended that these will be laid in Parliament later in 2018.

 

You Said

In total, there were 122 responses to the consultation, of which 63 were from organisations (including housing associations, local authorities, lettings agents, residents associations and fire safety consultants) and 59 were from individuals.

There was very strong support for a common new minimum standard for fire and smoke detectors across all housing, regardless of tenure. The main reasons given were that all properties should be safe for occupants and that tenure is not relevant. There was also strong support for the new standard to be based on the standard currently applying to private rented property which many respondents felt is a good minimum standard that adequately covers fire safety risks.

We Did

We published an analysis of the responses on 18 March 2018.

http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2018/03/9509

The Scottish Government has committed to extending the existing high standard required in private rented housing to all homes. The Housing (Scotland) Act 1987 will be amended to reflect the new requirements.  The amended standard will cover all homes. 

This would require:

  • at least one smoke alarm installed in the room most frequently used for general daytime living purposes,
  • at least one smoke alarm in every circulation space on each storey, such as hallways and landings,
  • at least one heat alarm installed in every kitchen,
  • all alarms should be ceiling mounted, and
  • all alarms should be interlinked.

The following changes to this standard, all supported by the responses to the consultation, are also proposed:

  • to allow specified types of sealed long-life battery alarms as well as mains-wired alarms - reflecting the availability of appropriate technology and will encourage compliance;
  • to specify a maximum age of ten years for alarms; and
  • to require carbon monoxide detectors in all homes. 

 

We Asked

We asked about proposed amendment to the Police Act 1997 and the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007.

You Said

We received 51 responses which provided detailed comments on the proposals.

We Did

We have considered the written observations received and Ministers laid a Statement in response to these in the Scottish Parliament on 15 December 2017.

We Asked

We asked for your views on the Scottish Governments’s current crofting policy statement and the legislative options and priorities for a new crofting Bill.

You Said

We received 122 responses, which provided the Scottish Government with detailed and varied feedback on the options for a new Bill, current legislative issues and how they might be addressed, and other aspects of crofting.

We Did

All non-confidential responses have been published, along with the analysis report. After taking account of the views offered, the Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy and Connectivity Fergus Ewing, announced his proposals for a two-phased approach by the Scottish Government in reforming Crofting Law; with work on both phases to commence immediately. Comments made regarding the policy statement and other non-legislative issues will be reviewed through on-going policy development, out-with the legislative strand of work. Updates and papers on the work conducted will be posted on the Scottish Government website.

We Asked

The Programme for Government 2017/18 outlined Scottish Government plans to  establish a Scottish National Investment Bank. The First Minster appointed Benny Higgins, to lead in developing an Implementation Plan. To inform this process we asked for your views on the role and remit of the bank as well as proposed governance models. We asked for international examples and evidence to support the views held.

You Said

We received 1,106 responses with 753 responses coordinated through a Friends of the Earth campaign. Respondents commented on areas of the current landscape that are successful and areas that could be improved by the establishment of a Scottish National Investment Bank, as well as commenting on:

  • The values of a National Investment Bank,
  • Industries and areas on which the Bank should focus,
  • Investment strategies and frameworks,
  • The relationship between the Bank and the existing landscape,
  • A  governance structure.

We Did

The findings have been used to inform the development of Mr Higgin’s Implementation Plan and a consultation report has been published alongside this Implementation Plan. As confirmed in the Programme for Government we will establish a Scottish National Investment Bank and will utilise the responses to this consultation to inform proposals.

We Asked

We asked for your views on Section 70 of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980 - a guidance document for users of the section 70 process.

You Said

We received 14 responses which provided detailed feedback on the guidance document.

We Did

We have fully considered all of the responses.  The responses have been published along with the analysis report.  The final guidance will be published shortly.

We Asked

We asked for your views on how victims of slavery, servitude and forced or compulsory labour should be provided with support in Scotland.

You Said

The analysis of the consultaiton report is available.

We Did

Regulations reflecting the policy will be taken forward in 2018.

We Asked

We asked you to give us your views on updating the School Premises (General Requirements and Standards) (Scotland) Regulations 1967.

You Said

77 responses were received which were supportive of all the Government’s proposals other than the sites for playing fields.

We Did

Consultation responses were published and independent analysis was carried out and published.  This is available to view here:  http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2018/02/6938

We Asked

Your views on pre-recording evidence of child and other vulnerable witnesses in criminal cases.

You Said

We received 47 responses, from 16 individuals and 31 organisations.

We Did

We published the non-confidential responses and an analysis of the responses to the consultation, available at http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2017/12/9674. The responses received will help to shape the Scottish Government's proposals for a Child and Vulnerable Witnesses Pre-recorded Evidence Bill.

We Asked

For your views on draft guidance on common good property. This included draft timescales and procedures for consulting on common good registers and in cases where there are proposals to change the use of or dispose of common good property.

You Said

A total of 44 responses were received from a mix of local authorities, Community Councils, other organisations, and individuals. Main themes included:

  • more time to consider, investigate and respond to common good proposals
  • a variety of ways to identify and engage with community groups
  • complexity of issues surrounding common good property

 

We Did

We have revised the guidance in line with many of the comments received during the consultation.

We Asked

We asked for views on our proposals for a Climate Change Bill.  We asked for views on overall greenhouse gas emission reduction target levels, and whether to set them all as percentage reductions from baseline. The proposed targets included a 2050 target of 90%, 2040 target of 78%, 2030 target of 66% and a 2020 target of 56%. It was proposed that annual targets would be set directly, as percentage figures, from these interim targets rather than via secondary legislation. We also asked for views on including provisions that would allow Ministers to set a net-zero (100% emissions reduction) target.

We asked for views on the target and reporting framework, including:

  • Removing the EU-ETS adjustment and reporting on actual emissions;
  • Allowing targets to be adjusted through secondary legislation;
  • Criteria to be considered when updating targets; and
  • Changes to the process for Climate Change Plans.

We also asked for views in relation to impacts on equalities, children and young people and business, as well as views on the Strategic Environmental Assessment.

You Said

There were 273 non-campaign responses to the consultation and 19,092 campaign responses. We commissioned independent contractors to undertake analysis of the report and you can find the consultation analysis report here:  http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2017/12/8859.

We Did

After serious consideration of all consultation responses, the Climate Change (Emissions Reduction Targets) (Scotland) Bill was introduced into Parliament on 23 May.   

The vast majority of respondents supported raising the ambition of the climate change targets for 2020, 2030, 2040 and 2050 and the Bill includes the target levels consulted on (as set out above).

A majority of respondents who answered the yes/no question on including provisions in the new Climate Change Bill that allow for a net-zero greenhouse gas emission target to be set at a later date supported the proposal. Campaign respondents, and many other respondents, called for a net-zero target year to be set now.  In response, the Bill goes further than was originally proposed, and requires Ministers to request regular advice on the earliest achievable net-zero target year. If they are advised of a year and do not set it in regulations, they must explain to Parliament why they did not do so. 

All targets will be set as percentage reductions and annual targets will be calculated directly from interim targets. Absolute emissions figures will continue to be reported, as called for by some respondents.

Targets will be reported based on actual emissions and not adjusted for the operation of trading schemes such as the EU-ETS.

Parliament will be able to adjust target levels either upwards or downwards.  In response to concerns from some respondents about being able to adjust them downwards, limitations are placed on this ability.

The fair and safe emissions budget criteria is retained as requested by some respondents.

The process for the development of Climate Change Plans is amended, including extending the time for Parliamentary consideration and requiring that Plans set out actions for compensating for shortfalls against previous targets.

More detail can also be found in the Policy Memorandum for the Bill which is available here: http://www.parliament.scot/Climate%20Change%20(Emissions%20Reduction%20Targets)%20(Scotland)%20Bill/SPBill30PMS052018.pdf

We Asked

From 18 July to 12 September 2017, the Scottish Government consulted on how the Socio Economic Duty should be implemented, including:

• How key terms should be defined

• Which public authorities the duty should apply to

• What public authorities could do to show they are meeting the duty and

• How public authorities could sensibly approach the links between different duties with a socio-economic focus

You Said

A total of 123 responses were received: 18 from individuals and 105 from organisations.

We Did

On 23 November 2017 we published a report providing a summary of the responses to the Consultation on the Socio-Economic Duty , and of what the Scottish Government plans to do as a result.

http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2017/11/7596

An easy read version was also made available.

http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2017/11/1989

We Asked

Your views on draft regulations that transfer the Scottish Charity Appeals Panel for Scotland to the Scottish Tribunals 

You Said

We received two responses from organisations. The respondents were content with the majority of the provisions. Comments have been addressed in the analysis of consultation responses document. 

We Did

We have considered the comments provided and have taken these into consideration when redrafting the regulations. 

We Asked

Your views on draft regulations that transfer the Additional Support Needs Tribunals for Scotland to the Scottish Tribunals 

You Said

We received 15 responses from individuals and organisations. The majority of respondents were content with the provisions. The main concerns have been addressed in the analysis of consultation responses document. 

We Did

We have considered the comments provided and have taken these into consideration when redrafting the regulations. 

We Asked

For your views on proposals to transpose, for private water supplies, Directive (EU) 2015/1787 (the Amending Directive), which makes some changes to Directive 98/83/EC (the Drinking Water Directive), by means of a new set of regulations for private supplies subject to the Directive (previously known as “Type A” supplies) replacing the Private Water Supplies (Scotland) Regulations 2006.

You Said

You broadly supported transposing the Amending Directive through the draft Water Intended for Human Consumption (Private Supplies) (Scotland) Regulations 2107, but a significant number of respondents to the consultation thought that the additional responsibilities placed on private water suppliers by the draft regulations and the amount of information to be included in the register of private supplies were too onerous, and the new way of defining the relevant persons in relation to private supplies was unnecessarily complicated.

We Did

In addition to some further modifications to the draft regulations informed by the consultation responses, we removed the additional responsibilities on private water suppliers, reduced the amount of information to be recorded in the register and simplified the definition of relevant person in the revised regulations, which were laid before Parliament on 7 September 2017.

We Asked

Part one

For your views on proposals to improve the energy efficiency of the least efficient privately rented properties in Scotland, to ensure that tenants have access to homes that are warmer and cheaper to heat.

Part two

For your views on proposals to make changes to the Repairing Standard (the minimum standard for private rented housing), and whether it should be extended to apply to other kinds of lets. We also asked for views on timing, costs and existing enforcement routes.

You Said

We received 198 responses to both parts of the consultation.

The responses to Part 1 noted the need for a lead in time, appropriate support and assistance, appropriate assessment mechanisms and robust enforcement for minimum energy efficiency standards.

The responses to Part 2 supported many of the proposed changes, were opposed to others and expressed mixed views on some. Responses recognised the cost implications, and emphasised the need for a reasonable lead-in time. They also felt the current enforcement routes via the housing tribunal would be appropriate.

We Did

Part one

We published an analysis of the responses on 14 November 2017. 

http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2017/11/6863

The Scottish Government has committed to introducing standards in the private rented sector to improve the energy efficiency of the least efficient properties. We  will continue to refine the proposals taking account of the consultation responses. We will confirm the standards, including an appropriate lead in time, as part of the routemap for Scotland’s Energy Efficiency Programme, which will be announced in 2018.

Part two

We are committed to ensuring that every private tenant is able to live in a safe and good quality home.  Informed by your consultation responses, we intend to lay draft regulations to this end in Parliament in 2018.  The changes will include provisions for: the tolerable standard being included in the repairing standard; a minimum standard for safe kitchens; a fixed heating system; lead free pipes (and where it is not possible to establish if lead pipes are present - water quality testing); safe access and use of common facilities including secure common doors; residual current devices; risk assessment of private water supplies and annual water quality testing; capacity for a fridge/freezer and safety of heating systems using other fuels. We will also provide clarity on whether holiday lets (or certain types of holiday lets) are subject to the repairing standard. A lead in time of at least five years will be proposed for any changes to the repairing standard, along with the use of existing enforcement routes for the proposed new measures.

At this time, we do not intend taking forward proposals for thermostatic mixing valves. Other proposals around asbestos surveys, the provision of cookers, fridges and freezers, sound insulation and food storage space are being considered further. Changes to the repairing standard will not be explicitly linked to wider government milestones on climate change.

A decision has not yet been taken on extending the repairing standard to agricultural tenancies, rented crofts and small holdings. Further considerations will take place on this matter, and will be informed by findings from the Agricultural Housing Condition Surveys.

 

We Asked

The consultation on Scotland’s Energy Efficiency Programme (SEEP) set out the long term vision for Scotland’s building stock and looked at different options for programme and policy design to deliver that vision.

The consultation asked 27 questions and covered a range of issues including:

- the vision, aims and objectives of SEEP

- the role of regulation, standards and financial incentives

- appropriate levels and sources of funding

- the provision of advice, information and consumer protection

- how to establish and sustain local supply chains and trusted delivery agents

- the balance of local and national responsibilities, and programme delivery

You Said

We received 104 responses from individuals and organisations.  Respondents commented on what currently works and current issues with existing programmes, as well as offering views on the proposed aims and objectives of SEEP and on:

- the role of regulation, standards and financial incentives

- appropriate levels and sources of funding

- the provision of advice, information and consumer protection

- how to establish and sustain local supply chains and trusted delivery agents

- the balance of local and national responsibilities, and programme delivery

We Did

The findings from this analysis will be used to inform policy decisions on the overall design and operation of SEEP.  As confirmed in the Programme for Government we will publish a Route Map for Scotland's Energy Efficiency Programme in 2018 setting out the long-term aims of the programme and the steps we will take to realise those aims. 

We Asked

We asked you to give your views and experiences of the collaborative economy in Scotland.

You Said

The call for evidence received a total of 52 written submissions. Of these, 41 were submitted by group respondents and 11 by individual members of the public. This has given us the different views and experiences from consumers, businesses, business representative bodies, public sector and other organisations.

We Did

Responses from the call for evidence have now been published along with an analysis report of all the submissions. The Scottish Expert Advisory Panel on the Collaborative Economy has used this evidence to aide discussions at evidence sessions throughout the year and will help to form recommendations that will be put to ministers at the end of the year.

We Asked

We asked you to give us your views about the draft guidance on improving outcomes for children and young people from travelling cultures.

You Said

31 responses were received, giving us detailed feedback on all sections of the guidance document.

We Did

We have now published those consultation responses and an analysis report covering the key points raised.  We will now consider the content of all responses received and amend the draft guidance where appropriate. We will aim to ensure that the final guidance meets the needs of those supporting the education of Traveller children and young people in Scotland’s schools and communities. 

We Asked

We asked for your views on the draft Registration of Independent Schools (Prescribed Person) (Scotland) Regulations 2017.

You Said

Thirteen responses were received, which were generally supportive of the Government's proposals.

We Did

All consultation responses have been published, along with a brief summary of key points raised.  The Scottish Government have taken into account consultees' views and no changes have been made to these regulations.  The regulations will be laid as drafted in the Scottish Parliament on 30th May 2017.