Scottish news bulletin: 18th December 2008

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All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper's website, the relevant page reference is blue and underlined.

Economy

Economic Crisis: Further analysis and commentary on the state of the economy provided by Bill Jamieson in the Scotsman (page 10)

Stirling and Interest Rates: The pound hit a new low yesterday, almost reaching parity with the euro amid growing expectations of a deep interest rate cut.
However the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee is worried that a bigger cut in interest rates would trigger an excessive fall in sterling and undermine economic confidence.
(Scotsman page 10, Guardian page 32, The Herald page 28,
P&J page 11)

48 Hour Working Week: The European Parliament voted yesterday to scrap Britain’s opt-out from the maximum 48 hour working week. (The Herald page 6, The Times page 10,
P&J page 14, Courier page 3, Telegraph page 13)

Woolworths: Some 28,000 workers are to be unemployed as of early January amidst the closure of all Woolworth’s stores in the UK. (Guardian page 5, Daily Mirror page 8, The Daily Express page 1,
P&J page 11, Courier page 1)

Unemployment: Service sectors and young men bear brunt of losses with store closures likely to push unemployment to 2m in the New Year. (Guardian
page 4, The Sun page 1, Daily Express page 7, The Times page 1, The Daily Record page 2, Telegraph page 4, FT page 2)

Bank bailout: The government is likely to be forced to put more money into UK banks the Bank of England warned yesterday. (FT page 1)

Crime

Life Sentences: Scotland’s most senior law officer, the Lord Advocate Elish Angiolini told the Court of Criminal Appeal yesterday that she believed the current options available to the judiciary were inadequate to deal with the most serious murder cases and that Scotland’s most notorious killers are getting away with soft sentences. (Scotsman page 1, Herald page 1, Daily Mail page 1)

Jail Terms: Short jail terms don’t cut high reoffending rate and instead the Scottish Government proposes new Community Payback Sentences in place of jail terms of six months or less. (Scotsman page 5, page 25 The Daily Express page 15, The Times page 30, Daily Mail page 6. Daily Record page 27,
P&J page 1, Courier page 11, Telegraph page 1)

Transport

Edinburgh Airport: The Competition Commission has announced that Edinburgh Airport should come under new ownership to address the concerns that BAA controls both Edinburgh and Glasgow. The Airport sale will reportedly save the public £180 million. (Scotsman page 15, Scotsman page 31, Herald page 1, The Sun page 18, The Daily Express page 10, The Times page 19,
Courier page 6, Telegraph page 6)

Education

University Research: Scottish Universities excel at research and have reinforced their position at the forefront of world class research, a new survey has shown. (Scotsman page 6, Herald page 1, The Sun page 4,
Courier page 10)

Supersized school classes: Edinburgh primary schools could soon see ‘supersized’ classes of up to 36 pupils taught by a team of teachers, it emerged last night. This has sparked fury among parents. (Scotsman page 13)

Politics

Royal Mail: Jim McGovern MP for Dundee West resigned from his role as ministerial aide
because he could not support the plan to part privatise Royal Mail (Scotsman page 6, Herald page 6, Guardian page 39, Sun page 2, Daily Mirror page 16, Daily Express page 7, Daily Record page 2,
P&J page 12, Courier page 3)

Quangos: Debate on whether or not the new figures show the SNP has failed in promise to reduce quango numbers is commented by Derek Brownlee, Scottish Conservative finance spokesman and Alex Neil SNP MSP. (Scotsman page 23, Herald page 10, The Sun page 4,
Courier page 12, Telegraph page 6, Alan Cochrane in the Telegraph)

Elections: A new post is to be created to oversee the running of elections across Scotland following last year’s Holyrood poll fiasco. (Herald page 6)

Reform Scotland is an independent, non-party think tank that aims to set out a better way to deliver increased economic prosperity and more effective public services based on the traditional Scottish principles of limited government, diversity and personal responsibility.

www.reformscotland.com

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