6 November 2009

Highlands and Islands Airports Ltd

The Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Climate Change, Stewart Stevenson, today announced an extension to the appointment of Mr Grenville Johnston as interim Chair of Highlands and Islands Airports Ltd (HIAL).

Mr Johnston, who lives in Elgin, served as a non-executive Director of HIAL from 2001-2008. He was formerly senior partner/consultant with Johnston Carmichael, Chartered Accountants based in Elgin and was President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland in 2000-01. Mr Johnston is currently Chair of Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd and of Cairngorm Mountain Ltd. As Chair of Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd, he receives a daily fee rate of £337 for a minimum time commitment of three days per month. He is also Lord-Lieutenant of Moray.

Mr Johnston's interim appointment began on February 1, 2009 and was initially for eight months. The Commissioner for Public Appointments in Scotland has recently approved the extension of the interim appointment for a further six months, from October 1, 2009 to March 31, 2010.

This post is part-time and attracts a remuneration of £21,880 for a minimum time commitment of six days per month.

HIAL is a public corporation wholly owned by the Scottish Ministers and is sponsored by the Scottish Government Transport Directorate. The company's purpose is to maintain the safe operation of its airports and to support economic and social development in the Highlands and Islands. HIAL currently operates 11 airports in the Highlands and Islands (located at Barra, Benbecula, Campbeltown, Islay, Inverness, Kirkwall, Stornoway, Sumburgh, Tiree and Wick) and at Dundee. Total passenger numbers in 2008-09 were 1,296,303, ranging from 8,736 at Tiree to 663,985 at Inverness.

All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees' political activity within the last five years (if there is any to be declared) to be made public. Mr Johnston has not been politically active in the last five years.

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