Roseanna Cunningham: Land Commission will mean an end to the “stop-start nature of land reform”
Community Land Scotland chair Lorne MacLeod calls for discussion of what should come next in land reform
Highlands - credit: Flickr
The new Land Commission will mean an end to the “stop-start nature of land reform” in Scotland, Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham will tell a conference today.
Cunningham will make the pledge at the Scottish Land Reform Conference.
The Scottish Parliament passed the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016 at the end of the last session, and will soon begin consulting on a new Land Rights and Responsibilities Statement.
There will also be a new Land Commission, responsible for scrutinising the effectiveness and impact of laws and policies relating to Scotland’s land.
Community Land Scotland chair Lorne MacLeod said the conference was a chance to discuss what should come next in land reform.
She said: “Scotland is part way down the road of land reform, with significant legal changes already made and now being implemented, with a Land Commission now being appointed, with The Scottish Government soon to consult on a new Land Rights and Responsibilities Statement.
“While there will be an inevitable and proper focus on implementing recent change, we also need to develop the thinking on what comes next, what should he agenda for the Land Commission be, what do we want to see developed as the land rights and responsibilities of the future?”
Cunningham said the legislation was aimed at creating “real opportunities for people in urban and rural areas to have more say in how land is owned, used and managed”.
She said: “As we enter the next phase of land reform in Scotland, we will establish a Scottish Land Commission that will see an end to the stop-start nature of land reform. We are also recruiting five land commissioners, and one tenant farming commissioner and we are seeking to improve transparency around who owns land in Scotland.
“Community Land Scotland has played a key role in supporting communities to buy land and its work has helped us reach the half way mark towards our ambitious target of having one million acres of land in Scotland in community ownership by 2020. I look forward to continuing to work with CLS to reach this target.”
Community Land Scotland is the representative body for community landowners in Scotland.
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