‘Land Reform in a Net Zero Nation’ Consultation Paper, Community Land Scotland advice for Members
Scotland has led the way internationally on land reform, giving power to communities to acquire and develop land and buildings that are important to them and that will help build stronger, more successful communities. Previous Land Reform and Community Empowerment Acts in 2003, 2015 and 2016 introduced the various Community Rights to Buy, as well as the Scottish Land Fund and the Scottish Land Commission.
Much progress has been made, and from Eigg to Langholm, the Western Isles to Orkney and down to Dumfries – ambitious inspired communities have been coming together to buy local shops and pubs, houses and housing land, whole estates and forests. All of this has been made possible through the legislation introduced by the Scottish Parliament and the associated funding.
All of this progress is however, being put at risk, as values rise, more and more land and buildings are sold off market without communities getting the chance to bid and the suite of Community Rights to Buy become more difficult to use.
The proposed Land Reform Bill is a chance to address some of these challenges and ensure we do not roll back the progress that has already been made. The consultation is long and all of it may not be relevant to you or your community. CLS is preparing a detailed response. However, many members have asked for a precis of the key issues and some ideas for where they can respond and add most value to the debate.
This briefing contains our key proposals in the consultation response, which we hope are helpful to you in drafting your own response.
The consultation paper, and ways to respond, are here on the Scottish Government website. All members and individuals are encouraged to respond.