First Minister ‘hopes to publish Werritty Review before the end of the year’

At today’s First Minister’s Question Time in the Scottish Parliament Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that the Government had received Professor Werritty’s grouse moor management review on Monday (18th Nov) and said “we hope to publish it before the end of the year, and also to set out our response to it and how we will take forward its recommendations“.

You can watch the video here (starts 23.59 min, ends 27.35 min).

The topic came up in response to a question posed by Alison Johnstone MSP who had already made the very valid point that ‘endless reviews and delays had become a hallmark of the Scottish Government’s attitude towards wildlife protection’ and she asked whether Nicola Sturgeon was “too timid to stand up to vested interests“.

Here’s the transcript:

The Scottish Parliament breaks for recess on 22 December 2019 to 6 January 2020 inclusive. It’s not clear from Ms Sturgeon’s comment whether the Government hopes to publish the report (and the Govt’s response) before the end of the Parliamentary term by 5pm on 21 December or whether some poor civil servant will be tasked with the job between Xmas and New Year but hopefully in five and a half weeks at the very most we’ll finally have an opportunity to read Professor Werritty’s long-awaited report.

12 Responses to “First Minister ‘hopes to publish Werritty Review before the end of the year’”

  1. 1 Dave Dick
    November 21, 2019 at 7:49 pm

    It has long been all government’s habit to slip “tricky” news like this out during the christmas period hoping it will get lost….I trust those on this site and within the RSPB publicity section will be watching closely..

  2. 3 Paul Fisher
    November 21, 2019 at 11:21 pm

    11pm on New Years Eve it is then.

  3. 5 Peter
    November 22, 2019 at 8:59 am

    After the election of course. I’m not cynical

  4. 6 Simon Tucker
    November 22, 2019 at 12:32 pm

    I wonder how much black pen will have been wielded before it sees the light of day?

  5. 7 Dougie
    November 22, 2019 at 1:56 pm

    From 18 Nov. until the end of the year (minus Xmas & New Year close downs) is not a long timescale in which to arrange publication. The Sc. Gov. has said that it will also set out it’s response and how it will take forward the recommendations. On the face of it, all that could amount to rather a lot of work if the recommendations are radical.
    It is not unusual for any government to have an insight into reports before receiving the formal “official, signed and sealed version”. Advance knowledge of the report contents would have provided time for a response (or even just an initial outline response) to have been prepared.
    Now watch, with eagle eyes, what happens.

  6. 8 Merlin
    November 22, 2019 at 11:27 pm

    Alison Johnstone, I wish you represented my constituency instead of the doddering yes men that stand here, very well said I applaud you from the rooftops, to other parliamentarians reading this take note, you can take the piss out of the people some of the time but you can’t take it all of the time, Ruth, thanks for this particular blog as someone who has followed this site for some time it can make depressing reading at times, thanks for this one it cheered me up

  7. 9 Kevin B
    November 23, 2019 at 1:06 pm

    Improved regulation, licensing and laws are very welcome however they are only as good as enforcement.

    Give SSPCA the necessary powers to assist with enforcement otherwise nothing will change……

  8. November 23, 2019 at 5:38 pm

    Apparently SNH are engaged in some sort of charm offensive with the Moorland Forum just now…something must be afoot.

  9. 11 Tony Warburton MBE
    November 25, 2019 at 5:01 pm

    Don’t hold your breath folks – I think I just saw a cow jump over the moon – or was it a Ground Hog?

  10. 12 Voice of reason
    November 26, 2019 at 9:26 am

    No point in expecting it at least until the 13th of Dec at the very earliest. The reason for this is we are now in an election purdah period where government (at any level) is not allowed to make any controversial announcements that could favour any particular party or individual candidate. Regardless of what Werrity says this report will almost certainly be ‘controversial’ to an element of the electorate.
    So even if SG wanted to release it tomorrow their hands are tied until post election. And let’s be honest depending on the result it might be better if this comes out a fair bit beyond the election given it may well be lost in the news schedule, although depending on what it says and what the SG response is that might be just how they want it!
    If there are major reforms to be proposed by SG then it may also depend on whether they get their desired section 30 order for a 2nd independence ref as they may well feel that spooking significant numbers of people who own, work on or utilise large parts of the rural landscape is to be avoided.

    So ultimately this may come down to what happens on 12th Dec and it’s aftermath.

    My own guess is we will be waiting until either mid January at the earliest, and if they miss that window and Tories have a WM majority we may be waiting until late February to avoid brexit dominating the. Agenda, unless they want to bury it of course

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