SNP MSP Stewart Maxwell is today calling on the Westminster parties to clarify whether child benefit will be among the powers they claim will be devolved to Scotland – as Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls outlines plans to introduce a cap and real terms cut that would hit hard-pressed families across the country.
In his speech to Labour conference earlier today, Ed Balls stated that the 1 per cent cap on child benefit would extend to 2017 under Labour – a move that would take money out of family budgets.
He renewed Labour’s commitment to the continuation of Tory cuts and austerity – stating that “cuts and tough decisions” would be made by a Labour government.
SNP MSP Stewart Maxwell has welcomed a new poll showing that people in the West of Scotland thought Alex Salmond was the clear winner of Monday’s TV debate with Alistair Darling.
An ICM poll published in the aftermath of the debate shows that 73 per cent of people in the West of Scotland felt the First Minister was the winner of the debate – a margin of victory of an astonishing 46 per cent. The poll also shows that 53 per cent of West of Scotland residents thought Alex Salmond had the better arguments.
The strength of Scotland’s education sector has been highlighted again today – after the 2014 National Student Survey showed that Scotland is considered the best place in the UK to pursue a higher education.
Today’s survey also shows that student satisfaction in Scotland has risen again – standing at a three year high of 87 per cent.
SNP MSP Stewart Maxwell has highlighted a report in today’s Financial Times where Ben Thomson, Chairman of the Devo Plus think tank, outlines his fears of a No vote and criticises the proposals by the Westminster parties.
As well as Mr Thomson fearing more powers being prevented by Westminster “treacle” the article also reports a UK government official admitting that constitutional issues have been “kicked into the long grass”.
New UK Government plans to allow universities to raise tuition fees above their current £9,000 a year ceiling risk damaging the prospects of students from poorer backgrounds – and show the warped priorities of the Westminster establishment.
Newspaper reports today (Wednesday) confirm that the UK Government is examining plans to lift the current ceiling and allow graduates to repay their loans to their university rather than the Treasury – leading to concerns that the plan could deter universities from admitting students from poorer backgrounds.