Peter Peacock’s response to former HIE chair speech

24 March 2010

Commenting on a speech in Inverness today in which former HIE Chairman Jim Hunter criticised the Scottish Government's approach to HIE, Peter Peacock MSP, a persistent critic of how HIE is being hampered in its work, said,

"It is very difficult for a former Chair of HIE to comment on such matters, but it is now clear just how frustrated Jim Hunter is at the way the SNP have narrowed HIE's focus.

"His analysis is absolutely right and he has joined a chorus of criticism of the wrong headed approach of this Scottish government toward HIE."

Commenting on Mr Hunter's criticism of the loss of momentum in land reform, Peter Peacock said: "The Land Reform Act was an historic piece of legislation taken through Parliament by Labour Ministers.

" We are now committed to reviewing its workings in the light of experience.

"Our intention is to see more land in community hands and we are committed to trying to restore the Land Fund, something the present Scottish Government has turned its face against.

"Following the backing of Labour members, I am pleased to say that the Parliament has commissioned research on what needs to be done to improve the workings of the land reform act.

"Where the current Scottish government are failing to act, the Parliament itself may do so.

"I welcome the Highland Council initiative on all this through their conference today and will work closely with them and others to help drive matters forward."


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