Carmichael welcomes scrapping of HIAL centralisation plan

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has welcomed confirmation today that procurement for HIAL’s proposed centralisation of air traffic control from the isles has been scrapped. In response to parliamentary questions lodged by Liberal Democrat MSP for Orkney, Liam McArthur, the Transport Minister, Graeme Dey confirmed that HIAL has contacted companies involved in the Remote Tower procurement “to confirm that the tender exercise had been cancelled”.

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“Too little, too late” – Carmichael responds to Omicron fiscal measures from Chancellor

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has said that the Chancellor’s new fiscal support for businesses struggling with the rising Omicron wave of Covid cases was “too little, too late”. Rishi Sunak announced new fiscal measures today in the form of renewed rebates for statutory sick pay for small- and medium-sized businesses, and a one-off £6,000 grant for hospitality and leisure businesses affected by the new wave. Business leaders have already voiced concerns about the proposals and called for greater certainty on future restrictions.

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Carmichael responds to £94m hit to fishing and farming in official assessment of Australia deal

The Department for International Trade’s impact assessment of the agreement, published alongside the final text of the trade deal on 17 December 2021, refers to “a reallocation of resources away from agriculture, forestry and fishing” of £94 million. There is also an expected £225 million hit to the semi-processed food sector, such as tinned foods. The report also warns of “adjustment costs for affected sectors, businesses and employees” as well as the loss of jobs. 

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Carmichael calls for targeted support to hospitality businesses

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has today called for the government to ensure that hospitality businesses hit by government advice to stay at home and avoid social contacts are supported with fiscal measures. Mr Carmichael reiterated a call for the VAT reduction on hospitality and tourism to be extended alongside more immediate support for businesses.

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Carmichael leads debate on Post Office Horizon scandal compensation

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has today led a debate in Parliament on the administration of the Historic Shortfall Scheme, set up by the Post Office to compensate those victimised by the Horizon scandal. Mr Carmichael raised serious concerns about the way the scheme was being run and the opportunities for compensation for those affected, and in particular raised the serious challenges faced by the late Elena Kimmett, formerly postmistress in Stromness. Following the debate the minister responding agreed to write to Mr Carmichael to respond to the issues raised.

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Carmichael backs National Lost Trawlermen’s Memorial Day

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has spoken out in Parliament in support of a National Lost Trawlermen’s Memorial Day. Mr Carmichael intervened in support of a debate led by Karl Turner MP, who raised the idea as a national extension to a day of commemoration already recognised in the coastal city of Hull.

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Carmichael backs Cold Climate Allowance Bill

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has today [Tuesday] co-sponsored the Cold Climate Allowance Bill led by Neale Hanvey MP, as a pathway to reducing fuel poverty in the isles. The Bill, read for the first time in Parliament today, aims to introduce a Cold Climate Allowance which would seek to make an additional monetary payment to all those in receipt of the state pension and other social security benefits during the winter months.

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Carmichael raises concerns about citizenship removal in Nationality and Borders Bill

Orkney and Shetland MP and Liberal Democrat Home Affairs spokesperson, Alistair Carmichael, has spoken out today during a debate on the government’s Nationality and Borders Bill. Amongst a range of controversial provisions in the Bill, Mr Carmichael raised concern about the government’s plans to enhance powers to strip UK nationals of their citizenship and the harm this risked to the rule of law, as well as the rushed nature of the Bill’s passage.

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Carmichael backs campaign for paid miscarriage leave

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has signed up to the campaign to introduce paid leave for families who experience a miscarriage before 24 weeks. Ahead of the second reading of the Miscarriage Leave Bill today, Mr Carmichael pledged his support to ensure parents who experience miscarriage are able to properly grieve their loss.

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Carmichael backs cross-party bill to reform streaming revenue for musicians

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has today backed Kevin Brennan MP’s Copyright (Rights and Remuneration of Musicians Etc.) Bill, which would reform the law to allow musicians to get revenues from online streaming of their songs. Gaps in the law currently mean that while radio play guarantees royalties for musicians of all levels of success, there is no specific right to royalties from streaming, with much of the revenue instead going to large corporations. Despite broad support for the Bill from MPs and musicians, progress was blocked by the government.

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