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Live Reporting

Craig Hutchison and Louise Wilson

All times stated are UK

  1. Lib Dems back ending Abellio franchise

    Lib Dem MSP Mike Rumbles

    Lib Dem MSP Mike Rumbles says the punctuality of trains have declined and passenger complaints have risen since Abellio took over.

    We've had three improvement or remedial plans, 249 action points, 20 improvement measures and 9 initiatives he tells the chamber.

    Why is the Scottish government waiving performance penalties and making advanced payments to the company when it is not expected to his its targets during the lifetime of the franchise, Mr Rumbles asks.

    The Lib Dems will not support the government's amendment, nor will it support the Tory one he confirms.

    We believe the franchise given to Abellio should not be extended he says, adding his party will support Labour's motion.

  2. Scottish Greens to support Labour and the rail unions

    Green MSP John Finnie
    Image caption: Green MSP John Finnie

    John Finnie begins saying he does not support the current franchise system and pledges Scottish Green support for the Labour motion today.

    More specifically the Greens will support the rail unions, he adds.

    Mr Finnie says his party supports the full devolution of Network Rail, but today is about whose interests are served.

    The public are only interested in whether their trains arrive on time, he adds.

  3. Terminating franchise would require government to step in as operator

    Mr Greene says immediate termination of the franchise would force the Scottish government to step in as operator of the last resort.

    We do not believe the Scottish government is ready to do that, he explains.

  4. Here's the Tory amendment...

    Here's the amendment from the Tories
  5. 'Let's give them a go to succeed' - Tory MSP

    Tory MSP Jamie Greene
    Image caption: Tory MSP Jamie Greene

    Tory MSP Jamie Greene begins saying his party will not support Labour's motion today, despite agreeing no-one accepts the franchise is working properly.

    Mr Greene explains pulling the rug from the current operators will do more harm than good.

    He points out this debate is about calling for nationalisation of ScotRail, but nowhere does that appear in Labour's motion.

    The Tory MSP points to some improvements under Abellio and argues we should not spend the next two years wasting time on a public sector bid when we should be focusing on the infrastructure we already have.

    "Let's give them a go to succeed," adds Mr Greene.

    View more on twitter
  6. Here's the government amendment......

    Government amendment
  7. Minister warns against ending franchise without due diligence

    A better system can be achieved through a public sector controlled rail network in Scotland, Mr Matheson suggests.

    Under the current UK legislation we only have the power to franchise the running of rail services in Scotland, he states.

    He says while a public body can be set up to compete for it, this does not fix the system.

    Ending the franchise early without due diligence could lead to more issues he warns.

  8. Rail franchise system 'not fit for purpose' - Matheson

    Transport Secretary Michael Matheson
    Image caption: Transport Secretary Michael Matheson

    Transport Secretary Michael Matheson begins telling the chamber there are more services and trains than ever before.

    Mr Matheson accepts elements of ScotRail's performance have not met the terms of the franchise, which is why the government called for remedial plans.

    Labour MSP Neil Findlay asks if Abellio will meet its commitment to pay staff salaries until the end of its contract.

    The company must do that or breach the whole contract, replies Mr Matheson

    The minister adds the franchise system is not fit for purpose.

  9. This parliament has the opportunity to deliver change - Labour MSP

    This parliament has the opportunity to deliver change, Mr Smyth insists.

    Extending the franchise would reward failure and send a signal to private operators that they do not have to deliver in franchise targets, he warns.

    The Labour MSP adds a Labour government would nationalise rail across the UK and decisions on rails in Scotland would continue to be made in Scotland.

    Mr Smyth says even members who do not support nationalisation must see that Abellio must not be allowed to continue the service.

  10. 'To make matters worse rail fares have rocketed under this government'


    Mr Smyth says ScotRail's record on punctuality is "equally abysmal" and he asks if the minister believes if Abellio will ever meet its target on this and when.

    The Labour MSP asks what the point of targets is if the government refuses to enforce them.

    He says since Abellio won the contract, 75,000 trains have been cancelled and details more targets the company have missed.

    "To make matters worse rail fares have rocketed under this government."

  11. Here's the Labour motion....

    Labour motion
  12. Abellio has breached franchise agreement three times says Labour MSP

    Labour MSP Colin Smyth

    "It's decision time for the Scottish government," begins Labour MSP Colin Smyth.

    He says it time to decide whether to award failure or to strip Abellio of the contract.

    Abellio has breached the franchise agreement three times and it does not expect to hit its passenger satisfaction target for two years, he states.

    This is supposed to be grounds to strip it of the franchise altogether, he adds.

  13. Background: ScotRail travails

    Overcrowded train

    ScotRail has not had its troubles to seek of late, with serious disruption before and after Scotland v Russia at Hampden and on the last weekend of the festival in Edinburgh.

    However in June it emerged more trains were running on time and fewer services are being cancelled, ScotRail has claimed three months after being served with a remedial notice.

    The rail operator was forced to agree an improvement plan with the Scottish government after major problems on the network around Christmas.

    Campaigners say it is still unclear if the changes will lead to long-term improvements for rail travellers.

  14. Ending Abellio Scotrail franchise - Labour debate


    Scottish Labour will now lead a debate calling for ScotRail to be taken into public hands as soon as possible.

    The party's motion says Dutch-owned Abellio should lose its deal to run Scotland’s trains in 2022, three years ahead of schedule, because of poor service.

  15. Consensus on tackling nursery provision anomaly... nearly

    Children and Young People Minister Maree Todd says she will talk to local government partners and update MSPs in due course.

    The minister earlier committed to bringing forward legislation to address this anomaly in nursery provision for children whose entry to P1 is deferred.

    However Ms Todd does not commit to legislation in this parliament under pressure from opposition MSPs.

    Labour MSP Mary Fee welcomes the commitment to legislate but lambastes the lack of a timetable for implementation of that commitment.