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Moore in Independence talks with Sturgeon

Borders MP Michael Moore meets with Scotland's Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon today to discuss the terms of an independence vote.

It's hoped this will pave the way for a summit between Alex Salmond and David Cameron.

The two governments have been at odds since the start of the year.

The UK Government has offered to devolve specific powers to make a Yes/No poll legal.

But the Scottish Government has refused to accept their terms, saying it wants a multi-option referendum with a question on 'devo max'.

"I believe it is essential to sort out the referendum process so that we can move on to the real debate about Scotland’s future. I hope Nicola Sturgeon’s appointment and the mood music coming from the Scottish Government are a sign that we can make real progress in these referendum talks. I believe we can reach an agreement on an independence referendum that will be legal, fair and decisive."

– Michael Moore, Scottish Secretary and Borders MP

"I'm glad that Michael Moore has accepted my invitation to meet this week, following the productive talks I had last Thursday with David Mundell. I'm looking forward to another positive discussion, which will help pave the way for a meeting between the First Minister and Prime Minister to conclude the referendum negotiations.We can then move on to debating the issues and persuading people to vote Yes to an independent Scotland."

– Nicola Sturgeon, Deputy First Minister

Alex Salmond invited for talks

Michael Moore MP Credit: ITV Border

Scottish Secretary Michael Moore has written to the First Minister Alex Salmond to propose they meet for the next stage of their talks on how Scotland’s two governments can work together and deliver a legal, fair and decisive referendum.

The UK Government’s own consultation on the referendum ended in March and Mr Moore said that with both consultations now closed the time was right for constructive talks to resume. The Scottish Secretary said he was confident an agreement could be reached.

Mr Moore said:

“From my meetings with the First Minister earlier in this process, I know that the Scottish Government is supportive of a Section 30 Order, approved by the UK and Scottish Parliaments, to put the referendum on a sound legal footing.

"Both governments are also clear that there should be a single question, that the Scottish Parliament franchise should be used, and that the process should be overseen by the Electoral Commission."


Mobile phone coverage talks

Mobile coverage in the Borders has been affected Credit: ITV Border

Borders MP Michael Moore has held talks with Ofcom to discuss problems with mobile phone coverage.

The Secretary of State for Scotland raised concerns about problems Vodafone customers in Hawick have had in recent weeks, with the service having failed three times.

Mr Moore said: “The problem of poor mobile phone coverage in the Borders has been highlighted in the past couple of weeks as Vodafone customers in Hawick have been left with next to no service – a deeply frustrating situation for individuals and businesses."

“In this digital age, mobile phones are an essential part of life and it is extremely unfair that people in rural areas are not being provided with a decent service or sometimes any service at all."

  1. Tim Backshall

Scottish Secretary welcomes outcome of independence consultation

Scottish Secretary Michael Moore Credit: ITV Border

The Borders MP and Secretary of State for Scotland Michael Moore has welcomed the outcome of a public consultation on Scottish Independence. Mr Moore said that 75% of the 2,857 respondents agreed that there should be a SINGLE question on Scotland’s constitutional future.

The SNP government in Edinburgh is in favour of a second question, the so called ‘devo max’ option. Mr Moore also highlighted the 70% support for the vote to take place sooner rather than later. Mr Salmond’s team who want to see the vote delayed until the autumn of 2014.

75% support single question Credit: ITV Border

In a radio interview the Scottish Secretary admitted that a quarter of the responses to the government’s consultation exercise came from a ‘standard text’ on the Labour party’s website.

This led the Scottish government minister Bruce Crawford to call for the UK consultation to be subject to independent scrutiny, a call firmly rejected by Michael Moore.


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