Published: Tuesday, 17 June 2014 07:30
Empowering islands prospectus
The Scottish government’s plan for island communities, in the event of a vote for independence, includes giving over all the revenue from sea bed leases. The offer was part of a ‘prospectus’ published yesterday in Orkney by First Minister Alex Salmond, responding to the year-long campaign by all three island councils, Our Islands, Our Future. Mr Salmond said the offer in the publication, entitled ‘Empowering Scotland’s Island Communities’, was the most comprehensive package of powers for the islands. He also promised to bring forward a Bill for an Islands Act, which would place a duty on the Scottish Government and other public bodies to 'island-proof' their functions and decisions, and create a post of ‘Minister for Island Communities’.Responding to the detailed announcement in Kirkwall yesterday, Leader of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar Angus Campbell, said: “This is a historic day. When we launched Our Islands Our Future a year ago we could not have anticipated the amount of interest and discussion we were going to generate. This launch of the Scottish Government’s Prospectus is a product of those discussions and negotiations on a wide ranging list of subjects including the Crown Estate, Grid connections and the constitutional position of Island areas. Of course, the work doesn’t stop here. Irrespective of the outcome of the Referendum in September there is much that can be achieved for Scotland’s islands and our task, as always, will be to maximise the benefits for those who live in our Island communities.”
Read more: Local News for Tuesday 17th June 2014
Published: Monday, 16 June 2014 07:30
Niall Iain abandons ship
Solo rower Niall Iain Macdonald has abandoned his attempt to row the Alantic, just nine days and 100 miles into the epic effort. Niall Iain was injured when a freak wave tipped the boat, causing him to fall and cut his head, and injuring his back so badly he was unable to move. His call to the international co-ordination team at Falmouth Coastguard brought US Coastguards to his rescue in the cutter Sailfish, and he was taken ashore and transferred to Bayonne Hospital in New Jersey. He was discharged later on Saturday and is now staying with friends in New York. Niall Iain told supporters that scans indicated a severe muscle spasm in his lower back, and that he had to accept continuing the row was neither viable nor wise. His priority now is to recover the boat and his personal posessions, still drifting in the Atlantic.
Read more: Local News for Monday 16th June 2014