Michael Moore’s Westminster Notes

Every week, Liberal Democrat Secretary of State for Scotland writes a column for newspapers in his Borders constituency. Here is this week’s edition.

Eyemouth Renewables

I have been working with Eyemouth Harbour Trust and other local stakeholders over recent years to ensure our local economy benefits from the planned offshore wind development in the Firth of Forth. Last Friday, I was pleased to hold another of our meetings which was attended by a representative from Mainstream Renewable Power, the company which will develop the offshore wind farm. Scottish Renewables also attended the meeting and both provided extremely useful advice on the operations and maintenance support which Eyemouth could provide to the development. We made good progress in our discussions and as the development goes forward we will continue to work together to ensure local businesses and the local economy benefit from the opportunities presented by the project.

Launch of Poppy Scotland Appeal

Last week saw the launch of the Poppy Scotland appeal and I was pleased to be able to host the London launch at the Scotland Office on Tuesday. The reception was attended by members of the armed forces in Scotland, MPs and Peers and during the evening we heard about the work of Poppy Scotland to support ex-Servicemen and women, and their families in Scotland. Here in the Borders we have strong links to our armed forces and I know Borderers support this campaign every year. I want to encourage people therefore to buy their poppies as soon as possible to show our armed forces, past and present, the recognition they deserve and I hope this year is a great success for the appeal.

Scottish Lib Dem Conference

On Saturday I attended the Scottish Lib Dem Conference, which was a great time to catch up with friends and colleagues and meet up with various groups such as Citizens Advice Scotland. During the Conference I also gave a speech outlining the work I have been doing in recent months to secure a legal, fair and decisive referendum on independence. Now the terms of the independence referendum have been agreed, I expressed my commitment to get on with the real, substantive debate on Scotland’s future.

From financial regulation to pension payments to overseas aid, I emphasised my belief that we are stronger together and weaker apart. For example, here in the Borders, local companies and individual savers benefited when their bank accounts were guaranteed by the UK’s resources, and businesses and home owners are currently benefiting from low interest rates thanks to the UK’s triple A credit rating. For these reasons, and others I will be passionately campaigning for Scotland to remain in the UK because it is better for Borderers, better for Scots and better for all UK citizens.

* Michael Moore was the Liberal Democrat MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk from 1997-2015 and Secretary of State for Scotland from 2010-2013.

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