A Scottish Parliament committee has called on the government to look again at its plans for a national register of people who have control over land.
The proposed Register of Controlled Interests in Land, the purpose of which is to make land ownership more transparent, is the subject of a report by the parliament’s Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee. A report by the committee points out that there could be gaps or loopholes in the new register as they state that the proposals currently rely on multiple registers and exclude information that is in the public domain.
The committee says that the information should be accessible in a simple and straightforward way and able to be accessed via a single point and free to use.
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Committee convener, Gillian Martin MSP said: “The committee was very clear in its conclusions.
“There should be transparency over who owns Scotland’s land, who takes decisions over its management and who benefits from its ownership.
“However, in looking at the proposed register there are a number of areas of concern.
“We need to ensure the information on those who have control over land is transparent, easy to use and the information is available in one place.
“We are therefore calling on the Scottish Government to address these issues when they finalise the detail of their proposals.”
The Land Reform Act 2016 gave the Scottish Government power to legislate to create a register and the draft regulations that the committee is considering provide the detail on how that will happen.