Karen Adam is now the MSP for Banffshire and Buchan Coast

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9 April 2003

Stevenson Receives Assurance From Finnie On SAC Proposals


SNP Scottish Parliament candidate for Banff & Buchan Stewart Stevenson has received an assurance from Rural Development Minister Ross Finnie in response to his concerns stating that he has asked the Scottish Agricultural College to come back to the Scottish Executive with revised proposals.

In his letter, the Minister also advises Mr Stevenson that he has asked for a review of the services which could continue to be provided at Craibstone and Auchencruive.

Commenting on the Minister’s reply, Mr Stevenson said:

“This is a welcome response from the Minister and I am pleased that he has acted on pressure from MSPs, students and staff.

“There is no doubt that the proposals to centre the SAC in Edinburgh and move away from the agricultural heartlands of the North-east and Ayrshire is a completely ridiculous proposition and the Minister goes some way to recognising this when he states that the proposals also run counter to the Executive’s relocation policy.

“I raised concerns in the Rural Development Committee of the Parliament and the Committee agreed unamimously that centralising the Scottish Agricultural College in Edinburgh was not the way forward. In addition, a number of flaws were identified in the assumptions made in the report which recommends centralisation which I think the Minister also accepts if I read him correctly.

“Staff and students willI welcome this letter which shows that Ross Finnie is clearly moving onside as the campaign to save Craibstone and Auchencruive gathers pace.”

Stewart Stevenson
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