Don calls for views on Regulatory Reform Bill

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ANGUS North and Mearns MSP Nigel Don has urged businesses, organisations and individuals concerned with environmental regulations to make their views on The Regulatory Reform (Scotland) Bill known to the Rural Affairs, Climate Change and Environment (RACCE) Committee, ahead of the review of the Bill in coming weeks.

The Bill reforms the Scottish Environment Protection Agency’s (SEPA) remit by augmenting its core purpose of protecting the environment to include contributing to sustainable economic growth. It would also introduce tougher enforcement measures to ensure that SEPA will continue to enforce environmental laws more effectively. The Courts would be granted specific powers in regards to compensation orders, the consideration of financial benefits when imposing fines, and publicity orders.

Mr. Don said: “I believe that this Bill will help achieve the goal of having the state enact regulations necessary to protect the natural environment we cherish while helping our businesses and communities prosper.

Business groups have welcomed the Bill’s provisions that promote regulatory consistency across Scotland and encourage regulators to adopt transparent, accountable, proportionate, consistent and targeted regulations that contribute to sustainable economic growth, while others view reform as necessary to ensure adequate enforcement is in place. Although the initial support for the Bill is encouraging, I would encourage those affected to make their views known to the Committee.”

Mr. Don is a member of the RACCE Committee, which will be looking at the Parts of the Bill that reflect their remit. The deadline for receipt of written submissions is Monday, May 20. Electronic submissions should be sent to racce@scottish.parliament.uk