Draft Referendum Bill

Last chance to have say draft proposals for on rules governing a Bill on Independence Referendum.

People are being urged to give their views on the Scottish Government’s draft Referendum Bill before the consultation closes next week.


Constitution Secretary Derek Mackay wants to gather as many views as possible to inform the Bill, which will determine how any future referendum on independence for Scotland will be run.


The draft Bill gives the Scotland the ability to reconsider the question of independence before the UK leaves the EU. It proposes that any referendum would be run in a way similar to 2014, with adjustments reflecting recent changes in elections law and procedures such as individual electoral registration.

Mr Mackay said:

“The EU referendum result is the biggest threat in modern times to our long-term economic well-being and leaving the EU could affect Scottish jobs, investment and standards of living.

“Scotland’s Place in Europe, published last month, set out proposals to protect Scotland’s place in, and relationship with, Europe However a material constitutional change has occurred since 2014 and the option of independence must stay on the table.

“Any decision on holding a referendum is for the Scottish Parliament. Our intention is that the Bill is ready for introduction should the Scottish Government decide that a referendum on independence is the best or only way to protect Scotland's interests.

“It is important that any future referendum on independence would meet the gold standard in terms of fairness, transparency and propriety set by the one in 2014 - and I’d encourage anyone with an interest to give us their views before the consultation closes next week.”

The consultation is available until 11 January 2017 at: https://consult.scotland.gov.uk/elections-and-constitutional-development-division/draft-referendum-bill/


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