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04/06/14 15:28

Media Briefing - Wednesday 4 June 2014

The FMOS welcomed journalists to the morning briefing.

FMOS highlighted today’s report from the Expert Working Group on Welfare which consider the options for creating a new welfare system following a vote for independence. The FMOS highlighted that the Group’s report contains a number of important recommendations that could be undertaken immediately following independence, as well as medium and longer-term options as highlighted in the government’s response to the Welfare report. She said the Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon had confirmed in an independent Scotland the current government would take forward recommendations, including those to improve support for carers and to abolish the current Work Capability Assessment.

FMOS said that figures from the Registers of Scotland published today show that Scotland’s property sector has enjoyed significant growth in the last year. She said the cash value of residential sales has risen 22.2 per cent from 2012-13 to 2013-14, from £11.3 billion to £13.8 billion, and that sales volumes in 2013-14 were the highest since 2007-08.

FMOS also highlighted that the Housing Minister Margaret Burgess has announced that some of Scotland’s most vulnerable households will receive help to make their homes warmer, more environmentally friendly and cheaper through a £60 million energy efficiency fund. She advised that the investment into the Home Energy Efficiency Programme for Scotland (HEEPS) will enable Scotland’s local authorities to install energy efficiency measures such as solid wall, cavity and loft insulation in their communities.

The FMOS also advised journalists that the Scottish Government would be issuing a response to the Queen’s Speech later this afternoon.