Scottish Government view on changing the electoral system for elections to the Scottish Parliament

Stephen Campbell made this Freedom of Information request to Scottish Government Automatic anti-spam measures are in place for this older request. Please let us know if a further response is expected or if you are having trouble responding.

The request was successful.

Dear Scottish Government,

Under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002, I am writing to request information on whether the Scottish Government or any of the parties within it support changing the electoral system for elections to the Scottish Parliament.

Specifically, please provide:

- Any policy documents, statements, manifestos, meeting minutes, briefings or correspondence indicating the position of the Scottish Government and/or the SNP or Scottish Greens on potential electoral reform for Holyrood elections.

- Details of any internal review, analysis or research carried out by the Scottish Government examining alternatives to the Additional Member System currently used for Scottish Parliament elections.

- Information on the Scottish Government's views on implementing a proportional representation system for Scottish Parliament elections, either through Single Transferable Vote or party-list PR.

- Any records relating to discussions between the SNP and Scottish Greens on changing the electoral system for Holyrood as part of their cooperation agreement.

I believe this information will help illuminate whether the Scottish Government or parties within it support reforming elections to the Scottish Parliament.

If any part of this request must be withheld, please cite relevant exemptions. I look forward to your response within 20 working days.

Yours faithfully,

Stephen Campbell

Scottish Government

Our Reference: 202300381562

Dear Stephen Campbell,

Thank you for your correspondence sent on 18/10/2023. Your query will be
passed to the relevant area for consideration and has been given a
reference number of 202300381562. Please quote this number in all
correspondence. The Scottish Government aim to respond, where necessary,
as quickly as possible and within the stated timescale as indicated on our
website
(http://www.gov.scot/about/contact-inform...).

Yours sincerely
MiCase
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Scottish Government

1 Attachment

Please find attached a response to your correspondence.
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in order to secure the effective operation of the system and for other
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not necessarily reflect those of the Scottish Government.
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Your Reference: 202300381562

Dear Mr Hockenbull,

Thank you for your reply.

I have addressed each of your points in turn:

"If you wish to also obtain any material on the matters outlined above held by the Scottish National Party and/or the Scottish Green Party but not by the Scottish Government, you might wish to consider making separate requests to those organisations." My understanding is that political parties are not subject to FOI. Please let me know if this is not correct.

"I assumed that by "electoral reform" in this instance you mean information on changing the electoral system used for elections to the Scottish Parliament and will proceed on that basis." Yes, my enquiry relates to electoral reform for Scottish Parliamentary elections.

"Where the same position has been set out in the same language on several occasions, I would propose to only provide you with one version of the text. Can I check if that is acceptable?" Yes this is acceptable.

Yours sincerely,
Stephen Campbell

Scottish Government

Dear Mr Campbell

Thank you for your email. You are quite correct that political parties are not subject to freedom of information legislation, I meant simply that you could nevertheless enquire with each party (or an elected representative) for information in relation to your queries if you so wished. Please accept my apologies for any confusion.

Regards

Iain Hockenhull

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Scottish Government

4 Attachments

Thank you for your request dated 18 October 2023 under the Freedom of
Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA) seeking information on the
Scottish Government views on potential electoral reform for Holyrood
elections. I attach a response to your request.

I also attach Annexes A and B to my letter and a copy of the Arbuthnott
Report as separate documents.

Please get in touch with me if you have any problems with any of the
attachments to this email.

Regards

Roddy
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This e-mail (and any files or other attachments transmitted with it) is
intended solely for the attention of the addressee(s). Unauthorised use,
disclosure, storage, copying or distribution of any part of this e-mail is
not permitted. If you are not the intended recipient please destroy the
email, remove any copies from your system and inform the sender
immediately by return.
Communications with the Scottish Government may be monitored or recorded
in order to secure the effective operation of the system and for other
lawful purposes. The views or opinions contained within this e-mail may
not necessarily reflect those of the Scottish Government.
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