On Monday I held a surgery in Banchory where I spoke with constituents about issues facing the Northeast, including continued opposition to the proposed SSE pylons line and problems with the NHS.
On Tuesday I attended a meeting of the Environment, Climate Change, and Land Reform committee where I asked for clarification about the accuracy of TIMES model predictions, especially as it includes unrealistically high targets for switching to low-carbon heating systems in a short time frame. The full discussion can be seen here.
In the afternoon I attended a Ministerial Statement on the Business Rates Review where I pressed Secretary MacKay for a response to the issue of businesses forced to destroy premises rather than face exorbitantly high empty property rates. The full question and response can be found here.
I also had a meeting with George Hepburne Scott on carbon credits.
On Wednesday I had a full day of meetings with groups such as Alcohol Focus Scotland, League Against Cruel Sports, the Azerbaijan Delegation, Arrhythmia Alliance, and a Scottish Environment LINK seminar. In the evening, I attending a reception for Environmental Futures.
On Thursday, I met with Dr. Fiona Riddoch and Professor Karen Turner from the Centre for Energy Policy at Strathclyde.
In the chamber, I attended Lewis Macdonald MSP's debate on Co-investment in the UK Oil and Gas Sector, where I spoke about the importance of Oil and Gas to the Northeast economy. My full statement can be found here.
I also attended the Stage 3 debate on the proposed budget. It is essential that we continue putting pressure on the SNP government to address the real economic issues facing Scotland and to make this budget effective and fair for families and firms across the nation.