Scotland - Smith Commission Report

  Woolwell 13:38 27 Nov 2014

The Smith Commission has come up with a number of recommendations Key Points and I suspect that it will be accepted by the UK Government. However I cannot see how it will work and it appears to give an advantage to Scotland with the Barnett formula being retained.

Scotland will be able to set its own rate of Income Tax for PAYE for example. However income tax pays for a lot of shared interests eg defence, foreign office, home office, security services, etc. If Scotland sets a low rate then the rest of UK would effectively be subsidising Scotland for these services.

Air Passenger Tax could be different north of the border. This could have an impact of northern English airports if set lower than the rest of UK or hit Scottish airports if higher. Scotland are unlikely to set it higher.

Why should the Barnett formula continue when Scotland has its own money raising powers?

How can Scotland have the voting age reduced to 16 and not the rest of UK?

The West Lothian question doesn't appear to have been addressed.

I can see many in the rest of UK crying that this is unfair.

  spuds 14:13 27 Nov 2014

Just had a very quick read from the link, and one part makes me wonder how this will be implemented, because some parts of the Crown Estates are partly owned by third parties as joint ventures.

**Crown Estate Responsibility for the management of the Crown Estate's economic assets in Scotland, and the revenue generated from these assets, will be transferred to the Scottish Parliament.**

Another point would be the Aggregate Levy and how will that effect the North And South divide. Are the levies the same or will they be different, which may lead to cross border differences.

**Aggregates Levy Once the current legal issues in relation to Aggregates Levy have been resolved, the power to charge tax on the commercial exploitation of aggregate in Scotland will be devolved to the Scottish Parliament. The Scottish government will be free to make its own arrangements with regard to the design and collection of any replacement tax**

  john bunyan 14:19 27 Nov 2014

The Barnett formula is similar in size the Scottish Oil tax revenue , so maybe an opportunity was missed to let the Scots keep the Oil revenue in return for abolishing the Barnett formula. My main concern is to keep the UK united wrt Defence and foreign policy. I do object to my region (SE) receiving £7658 per head of government spending whilst the Scots get £10152, and my grandchildren have to pay £9000 per year at Uni.

Barnett formula

It seems obvious that, particularly if the Tories are re elected, that Nicola Spurgeon will go for another UDI attempt.

  Woolwell 16:24 27 Nov 2014

The whole sorry mess strikes me as being divisive and politicians may eventually repent at leisure "promises" made in haste before the No vote.

  morddwyd 21:56 27 Nov 2014

"Why should the Barnett formula continue when Scotland has its own money raising powers?"

Because the Prime Minister promised it would continue, and having broken his promise on immigration he will not want to be caught out again!

"How can Scotland have the voting age reduced to 16 and not the rest of UK?"

Don't misunderstand - that only applies to Scottish elections. We took the bols step of trying it and it seemed to work.

"The West Lothian question doesn't appear to have been addressed."

The West Lothian question has been solved by the SNP. It is, and has always been, party policy that no SNP MP votes at Westminster on "English Only" matters.

Individual parties must make their own decisions, though if the polls are to be believed, there won't be any MPs of other parties in Scotland!

It is, of course, grossly unfair to England, but since the rest of us are saddled with a Conservative government voted in solely by the English electorate, there is some sort of poetic justice. They're your choice, not ours!

  Woolwell 22:05 27 Nov 2014

morddwyd - I would agree with your last para but the Smith Commission report seems to be accepted by all the main parties except the SNP and possibly UKIP. It was Labour, Lib Dem and Conservatives who got us into this mess with rash cobbled together promises. They Yes vote campaign comprised all of the parties except SNP. I don't think that the Scottish referendum was in any manifesto of the major parties and giving more power to Scotland was not part of the process.

If the lower voting age works for Scotland then why not the rest of UK. Oh I forgot there are not any votes for English decisions. However voting age could be reduced for councils but apparently not.

SNP not voting on English only matters is by convention only and could be broken. It needs enforcing.

  Woolwell 23:17 27 Nov 2014

Oops - don't know my yeses from my nos!

  morddwyd 09:45 28 Nov 2014

"It needs enforcing."

It is. It is not a convention but party policy, and members must adhere to it or leave the party.

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