With the right support small firms can grow

Murdo Fraser MSP who is convenor of the Scottish Parliaments’ Economy Energy and Tourism committee, has called on the Scottish Government to provide tailored support for Scotland’s small and medium sized enterprises.  A new report from the Federation of Small Businesses examines the experience of more than 650 of Scotland’s smallest employers, with the FSB calling for support in recruitment and employment processes. The report shows that micro-businesses make up 27% of all private sector jobs.

A9 Clampdown

Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Murdo Fraser has welcomed a police crackdown initiative on the A9 but has warned that these measures are only temporary solutions. On the back of this summer’s successful Joint-Crackdown Initiative, Tayside Police is starting a high-profile policing operation in association with their ‘After Dark’ campaign.The focus of the operation will be to increase road safety awareness, curb criminal activity and educate motorists on the dangers of the A9 at this time of year.

Cycle Safety in Perthshire and Beyond

Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Murdo Fraser has urged the Scottish Government to increase road safety awareness in order to protect cyclists. This week saw two high profile cycle crashes. Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins was knocked off his bike, as was, in a separate incident GB cycling head coach Shane Sutton. Over 100 cyclists have been killed on Britain’s roads already this year and these latest incidents prove that even the best in the world are at risk.With darkness drawing in after 5pm, it is imperative that cyclists wear highly visible clothing in their commutes to and from work. 

Remembrance Sunday

At 11 am this Sunday the whole nation will fall silent to remember those who gave their lives protecting Britain. Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Murdo Fraser will be laying a wreath at Blairgowrie War Memorial and has urged fellow Scots to pause in respect for those who have gave so much.

Scottish Government to audit College Waiting Lists

Government’s decision to audit college waiting lists, but insists the move should have come much earlier. At the start of last month figures revealed that 7000 prospective students were stuck on waiting lists for Scottish Colleges. Education Minister Michael Russell MSP initially dismissed the statistics but has now been forced into an embarrassing U-turn.

Ash Dieback Make Best from a Bad Situation

Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Murdo Fraser has backed calls to create 5000 rural jobs from the current Ash Dieback crisis, but has also urged the Scottish Government to act fast to protect our historic woodlands. The chairman of the Broadleaf Trust, a group of woodland owners, is urging the UK Government to allow ash to be milled into timber, claiming large scale felling operations could create up to 5000 jobs.

Cancer Deaths Increase in Fife

Statistics released by ISD Scotland have shown that the number of fatalities caused by cancer in Fife has increased in the last year. The figures revealed that 1,092 people died due to cancer in the NHS Fife region last year. 

36% of Tourists Won’t Visit Again Due to Wind Farms

Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Murdo Fraser has slammed the Scottish Governments energy policy in response to research conducted by the John Muir Trust. Their research has shown that 36 per cent of people would be “less likely to visit a scenic area with a large concentration of wind farms”.Just 2 per cent said they would be “more likely” to visit if there were a proliferation of turbines in the area.Furthermore, 37 per cent said the Scottish Government should prioritise protecting scenic wild land from large commercial wind farms, even if this means that there is less opportunity to develop wind power in those areas. Recently the BBC reported that 47% of Scots identified our landscape as the most important element of our culture. This news comes despite Alex Salmond’s claim that wind farms could become major tourist attractions in Scotland

Comet Joins Iconic High Street stores in Administration

Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Murdo Fraser has expressed his concern for the fate of staff at doomed electrical retailer Comet. Comet operates four branches within Mid-Scotland and Fife in Perth, Stirling, Kirkcaldy and Dunfermline. The news is another indicator of slowing consumer spending and the growing power of online retailers.

SAAS funding

Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Murdo Fraser believes that the Scottish Government should look to increase the number of call handling staff at SAAS headquarters during crisis periods. A Parliamentary Question answer from the education Minister Michael Russell in September detailed both the number of calls and the average waiting time for enquiries to SAAS. During August peak times the average call handler has 132 calls to deal with in a single day. In August the contact centre received over 103,000 calls. With an average call time of 10 minutes and 52 seconds, operators would need to work 23 hours a day to service these enquiries with no queues or waiting times.