The Advisory Notes expand on the vision and principles and set them in context. The context in Scotland has changed significantly since the last Statement so the consultation asked for suggested changes to the Advisory Notes.
General comments about the Advisory Notes for the first Statement included that they are now outdated and do not reflect the protocols and guidance produced by the SLC or recent policy developments. This latter issue was raised especially in connection to climate mitigation and biodiversity recovery, and reflected comments at earlier questions about greater emphasis being placed on addressing the climate emergency, enhancing and protecting natural capital and improving biodiversity.
Other respondents suggested they could be simplified and made more digestible for different types of landowners.
It was suggested that the Advisory Notes should be seen as a 'living document' to be updated regularly, including to reflect regulatory and policy changes such as those stemming from the Fourth National Planning Framework (NPF4) and the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019.
Restructuring suggestions included splitting the case studies from the other content of the Advisory Notes and presenting the case studies in a separate section with appropriate hyperlinks to the main document. Another was that the Advisory Notes should not be retained as part of the main Statement but could be presented as an annex to it.
Scottish Government response
In response to the matters raised in the consultation and the need to make sure that the Advisory Notes remain relevant as context changes, we have made the decision to separate them from the Vision and Principles of the Statement. This will allow the Advisory Notes to become a 'living document', which can be updated on a more frequent basis than the Statement itself, in step with changes in regulation and policy developments.
The Advisory Notes have been revised to reflect policy, regulation and other changes since 2017 and to reference the changes and additions made to the revised Statement. They will be revised on a regular basis to ensure that they provide a useful resource for the implementation of the Statement by those who own and manage land.
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