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Summary

  1. The Education Committee takes evidence from the Commission on Widening Access and the Fair Access commissioner
  2. Health and sport ministers are in the hot seats for portfolio questions
  3. Ministerial Statement: UK Supreme Court Judgement on Triggering of Article 50
  4. Scottish Labour lead a debate on the draft budget and ask Parliament to reject it as it stands
  5. SNP MSP Emma Harper leads a member's debate on celebrating Burns and the Scots language

Live Reporting

By Craig Hutchison and Colin Bell

All times stated are UK

That's all from Holyrood Live......

Robert Burns
BBC

That brings our coverage of the Scottish Parliament, for Wednesday 25 January 2017, to an end. 

We'll be back tomorrow.

Have a good night.

Scots is at the hearts of our communities and literature

International Development Minister Alasdair Allan
BBC
International Development Minister Alasdair Allan

International Development Minister Alasdair Allan says Burns speaks to the whole world.

The minister says both his grandfathers were ploughmen and therefore Burns speaks to him. 

Mr Allan says Scots is at the hearts of our communities and literature.

Most parties could claim Burns as one of their own

Tory MSP Finlay Carson
BBC
Tory MSP Finlay Carson

Tory MSP Finlay Carson says most of the parties could look at the work of Burns and claim him as one of their own.

Mr Carson says Burns could easily have written about greed and injustice but instead he spoke passionately about his fellow man.

It is good that children learn about Scottish heritage and dialect

SNP MSP Fulton MacGregor
BBC
SNP MSP Fulton MacGregor

SNP MSP Fulton MacGregor says it is good that children learn about Scottish heritage and dialect.

Mr MacGregor says a lot of words that were integrated into his language by his teenage years turned out to be Scots which he wasn't aware of at that time.

Scots and Doric is alive and well and it's no just about the 25 January

SNP MSP Gillian Martin
BBC

SNP MSP Gillian Martin says Scots and Doric is alive and well and it's no just about the 25 January.

Scots language is for more than just Burns day

SNP MSP Ruth Maguire
BBC
SNP MSP Ruth Maguire

SNP MSP Ruth Maguire says, as great a poet as Burns was, Scots language is for more than just Burns day. 

Ms Maguire says there are misperceptions of the Gaelic language and she would like to see it promoted more. 

Scots language is unique because of its roots in Gaelic

Lewis Macdonald
BBC

Labour MSP Lewis Macdonald says the Scots language is unique because of its roots in Gaelic.

Burns was clearly at home using the everyday language of his own people

SNP MSP Willie Coffey
BBC
SNP MSP Willie Coffey

SNP MSP Willie Coffey says Burns gave credibility to the Scots language.

Mr Coffey says he ignored the pleas to write his works in the conventional English language. 

The SNP MSP says the poems are not as powerful translated out of Scots.

He says Burns was clearly at home using the everyday language of his own people. 

Mr Scott also chooses my favourite quote from Burns

Burns was right on the money!
bbc
Burns was right on the money!

O wad some power

The givtie gie us,

To see oursel's

As others see us

Scots still the living language of many lowland Scots to this day

Tory MSP John Scott recites Tam o' Shanter and says one of Burns greatest achievements was to promote the Scots language.

Mr Scott says this is still the living language of many lowland Scots to this day.

Tory MSP John Scott
BBC
Tory MSP John Scott

The Tory MSP says Burns was unique which is why his work has been translated into a number of different languages across the world.

Mr Scott says Ken Macintosh is currently welcoming people from around the world to the presiding officer's Burns supper.

Tory MSP John Scott also references Burns....

She Flew at Tam wi’ Furious Ettle
Image copyrightSOUTH AYRSHIRE COUNCIL
She Flew at Tam wi’ Furious Ettle

From Tam 0' Shanter: 

When chapmen billies leave the street,And drouthy neibors, neibors meet,As market days are wearing late,An' folk begin to tak the gate;While we sit bousing at the nappy,And getting fou and unco happy,We think na on the lang Scots miles,The mosses, waters, slaps, and styles,That lie between us and our hame,Where sits our sulky sullen dame.Gathering her brows like gathering storm,Nursing her wrath to keep it warm.  

A man's a man for a' that

Rabbie Burns
bbc

Ms Harper quotes Rabbie Burns: 

Ye see yon birkie, ca'd a lord, Wha struts, an' stares, an' a' that; Tho' hundreds worship at his word, He's but a coof for a' that: For a' that, an' a' that, His ribband, star, an' a' that: The man o' independent mind

Ms Harper says Burns was the biggest inspiration for many including Bob Dillan.

Bob Dillan
bbc

Burns words embedded on the walls of the parliament

SNP MSP Emma Harper
BBC
SNP MSP Emma Harper

SNP MSP Emma Harper says Burns was told to abandon his Scots and speak properly.

The SNP MSP says he would not change his poetry from the Scots language.

Ms Harper says Burns wrote about fairness and equality in many of his songs,

She says Scottish Parliament recognises Burns and his words have been embedded outside on the walls of the building. 

Robert Burns Biography

Robert Burns was born on 25 January 1759, to tenant farmers, in the village of Alloway, two miles south of Ayr. 

Hard physical labour on the family farm took its toll on the young Burns, who increasingly turned his attentions towards the passions of poetry, nature, drink and women. 

Burns birthplace
BBC

He fathered twins with eventual wife Jean Armour, but a rift in their relationship nearly led to Burns emigrating to the West Indies with lover Mary Campbell (his Highland Mary). 

Mary's sudden death and the sensational success of his first published collection of verse kept him in Scotland. 

Robert Burns
BBC

In his late 20s, Burns arrived in Edinburgh, where he was welcomed by a circle of wealthy and important friends.

Illicit relationships and fathering illegitimate children ran parallel to a productive period in his working life. 

Globe Inn
BBC
Burns was a regular visitor to the Globe Inn

In just 18 short months, Burns had spent most of the wealth from his published poetry, so in 1789 he began work as an Excise Officer in Dumfries and resumed his relationship with wife Jean. 

He died on 21 July 1796 aged just 37 and was buried with full civil and military honours on the very day his son Maxwell was born. 

Ms Harper says her mither tongue was Scots when she was a lassie

SNP MSP Emma Harper
bbc
SNP MSP Emma Harper

SNP MSP Emma Harper says today is Robert Burns's birthday which is the ideal day to celebrate the Scots language.

Ms Harper says she is the chair of the Dumfries Burns club.

She says her mither tongue was Scots when she was a lassie.

Ms Harper says she is rediscovering Scots words now.

Here is Emma Harper's motion in Scots.....

SNP MSP Emma Harper has provided her motion in Scots.   

Motion
Scottish Parliament

Celebrating Burns and the Scots Language debate

Here is SNP MSP Emma Harper's motion.   

Motion
Scottish Parliament

BreakingThe Labour motion as amended by the SNP is not agreed to on the vote of the PO

Presiding Officer Ken Macintosh
BBC
Presiding Officer Ken Macintosh

The Labour motion as amended by the government leads to a tie with 63 MSPS for it and 63 MSPs against.

The motion as amended is tied so Mr Macintosh votes against the motion and it is not agreed. 

Motion
Scottish Parliament
Gov amendment
Scottish Parliament

The Lib Dem amendment is rejected

The Lib Dem amendment is rejected with 5 MSPs for and 121 against.

Lib Dem amendment
Scottish Parliament

The Scottish Green Party amendment is rejected

The Scottish Green Party amendment is rejected with 28 MSPs backing it and 98 against.

Greens amendment
Scottish Parliament

The Tory amendment is rejected

The Tory amendment is rejected with 30 MSPs backing and 96 against.

Tory amendment
Scottish Parliament

The government amendment is agreed to

The government amendment is agreed to with 63 MSPs for and 58 against to and with five abstentions.

Government amendment
Scottish Parliament

Decision time... and it could be a doozy!

We now move to decision time.

Ms Dugdale says if the SNP can't see the impact of the cuts they are not doing their job

Trainspotting
Getty Images
Ewen Bremner aka 'SPUD' in the middle is used to illustrate the threat of cuts by Ms Dugdale

Ms Dugdale says if the SNP can't see the impact of the cuts they are not doing their job.

Finance Secretary Derek Mackay asks if it is not alarming the Scottish Labour leader does not realise voting against the budget is voting is voting against £38bn of spending on public services

The Scottish Labour leader says she has seen T2 Trainspotting and she says Spud's new house is in Craigmillar.

All the progress made there may be lost due to this budget she says and she details the vital services

Ms Dugdale says: "It doesn't have to be this way."

She says this parliament has the powers to raise money and invest in public services.

The Scottish Labour leader says by increasing the tax rate cuts to services can be stopped. 

Debate has not been the best advert for this place

Labour Leader Kezia Dugdale
BBC
Labour Leader Kezia Dugdale

Labour Leader Kezia Dugdale says today's debate has not been the best advert for this place.

Ms Dugdale says it was Derek Mackay that said, if Parliament votes against this budget, jobs will be lost and "the lights will go out."

The Labour leader says one of the most "pathetic and puerile" things that was heard during the debate was the notion that we should ignore the SNP cuts being made. 

The minister again insists councils are getting a fair settlement

Mr Stewart says local authorities are key partners for the Scottish government.

Lib Dem MSP Mike Rumbles asks if the funding settlement for Aberdeen city is fair, being the lowest in the coutnry.

Mr Stewart pays tribute to the late Brian Adam who put in a funding floor which has ensured funding is higher in the North East.

Kevin Stewart insists councils are getting a fair settlement
PA
Kevin Stewart insists councils are getting a fair settlement

The local government minister says an additional £120m has gone to educational attaiment and an additional £107m partly to ensure the living wage in care.

He says local authorities can increase council tax by 3% with the potential to raise £70m extra.

The minister again insists councils are getting a fair settlement.

He says leaving Scotland without an approved budget will hit vital public services.

Local government settlement is fair says Kevin Stewart

Local Government Minister Kevin Stewart says he wants to focus on the need for stability in the economy and the government's partnership with local government.

Local Government Minister Kevin Stewart
BBC
Local Government Minister Kevin Stewart

Mr Stewart says the government's proposals include record funding for the NHS and real terms protection for the police budget.

He says the local government settlement is fair.  

Tory MSP highlights 8.3% cut to sport budget

rugby
CHRIS POLETTI
Tory MSP highlights 8.3% cut to sport budget

Mr Cameron says the amount invested in sport has fallen in this draft budget from £45.6m to £41.8m, a fall of 8.3%,

The Tory MSP says the last thing that the Scottish government should be doing is cutting the sport budget.

He says he lead a member's debate last night on the impact of obesity and its link with cancer.

This government has form in failing in health says Tory MSP

Donald Cameron
BBC

Tory MSP Donald Cameron says the Tory amendment is succinct and clear.

Mr Cameron says Derek Mackay cannot continue to insist that Scotland is the least taxed area of the UK.

The Tory MSP says he has asked Mr Mackay how much support there will be for GPs but the finance secretary has declined to answer.

He says this government has form in failing in health.

Mr Cameron says the Scottish government normally compare the NHS in England to paint the NHS in this country in a better light.

Decision time is at 5.30pm today

Scottish Green co-convener says the minority government must compromise

Scottish Green MSP Patrick Harvie
bbc
Scottish Green MSP Patrick Harvie

Scottish Green MSP Patrick Harvie says the minority government must compromise and there has been no sign of that yet.

Mr Harvie calls for historic action for this historic budget and introduce progressive taxation.

The Scottish Green Party co-coordinator says the impact of this budget on services will be significant.

He says councils are setting their budgets now with the resources they will receive now.

Mr Harvie says tax policy should provide fairness in the distribution of wealth in our society.

Lib Dem offer is a reasonable offer of a penny on income tax says Willie Rennie

Scottish Lib Dem Leader Willie Rennie says sarcastically that there has been a serious attempt to reach consensus and says "we need to get real".

Mr Rennie says there has just been a series of insults.

Scottish Lib Dem Leader Willie Rennie
BBC

The Lib Dem leader says there are serious problems with public services and his party have made some serious suggestions to deal with that.

He says the best investment that can be made is investing in children from a young age. 

Mr Rennie says his party's offer is a reasonable offer of a penny on income tax. 

Claim that Scotland is the highest taxed part of the UK does not stand up to scrutiny

SNP MSP Maree Todd says she is disappointed in this Labour motion to reject the budget in its entirety.

Ms Todd says the Conservative claim that Scotland is the highest taxed part of the UK does not stand up to scrutiny,

SNP MSP Maree Todd
BBC
SNP MSP Maree Todd

Labour MSP Johann Lamont asks if Ms Todd does not agree that a more progressive tax system is required.

Ms Todd says the Scottish government does support universalism. 

The SNP MSP says continually comparing ourselves with the NHS in England is setting the bar low.

Ms Todd says there is much to support in this draft budget so the Parliament should get behind it and find consensus. 

Scottish government have only created 'conveyor belt of Tory cuts'

Labour MSP Jackie Baillie says debating the budget is an opportunity to reflect on the priorities of the nation.

"Gone are the days that we simply spend what someone gives us," she says.

Ms Baillie says Scotland is being outperformed by the rest of the UK and "the truth is that we are in trouble."

Labour MSP Jackie Baillie
BBC
Labour MSP Jackie Baillie

The Labour MSP says business confidence is plummeting and she would have more respect for the Scottish government if they were not in such denial.

She says the the Scottish government have only created a "conveyor belt of Tory cuts".

It's "austerity on steroids," she says. 

Background: Corbyn attacks SNP budget plans in Glasgow speech

Jeremy Corbyn
BBC
Jeremy Corbyn said the SNP government "is not standing up for Scotland"

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn used his first speech in Scotland in 2017 to attack the SNP's budget.

Mr Corbyn used a speech in Glasgow to accuse the Scottish government of "devolving austerity and passing the buck".

He also accused Theresa May of engaging in a "race to the bottom" with her Brexit plans.

The SNP accused Mr Corbyn of "carping from the sidelines" and said Labour in Scotland were "stuck in a sorry place".