Comment on referral to Supreme Court.
Minister for UK Negotiations on Scotland’s Place in Europe Michael Russell has today reiterated that Scottish Ministers are satisfied that the Continuity Bill is within the legislative competence of the Scottish Parliament.
Mr Russell said:
“The Continuity Bill was passed by 95 votes to 32 in the Scottish Parliament, that is an overwhelming majority. Scottish Ministers are satisfied that the Bill is within legislative competence.
“The Lord Advocate will be arguing in the Supreme Court that it is within the powers of the Scottish Parliament to prepare for the consequences for devolved matters of UK withdrawal from the European Union.
“Our Continuity Bill is an important and necessary piece of legislation to prepare Scotland’s laws for Brexit while protecting the powers of the Scottish Parliament that people voted for.
“The Scottish Government has made clear it cannot recommend the Scottish Parliament consent to the Withdrawal Bill in its current form.
“Alongside the Welsh Government, we have always said our preference would be to reach an agreement with the UK Government to amend the EU Withdrawal Bill to respect the powers of the devolved administrations and both Governments are ready to continue meaningful talks to further discuss potential solutions.
“While the Scottish Government is not opposed to UK-wide frameworks in certain areas when these are in Scotland’s interests, this must only happen with the agreement of the Scottish Parliament.”