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SNP slammed for Edinburgh tram project secrecy

The SNP has been criticised for its decision to heavily censor 17 documents released under the Freedom of Information legislation relating to the Edinburgh tram project.

The transport scheme was supposed to receive government support, but John Swinney, the SNP Finance Minister decided to “scale back” direct involvement in the scheme as soon as he took office in May 2007.

Swinney’s then decided to restore government support to the project last summer but by that time the budget had doubled to more than £1billion.

The redacted information disclosed under FoIA was labelled “unacceptable” by Scottish Labour and they have called for a public inquiry into the matter, with the ultimate goal of unveiling all the information.

The Telegraph reports that earlier this month, the Edinburgh City Council and Tie, the arms-length publicly funded company set up to deliver the project, responded to a similar FoIA request by claiming they no longer held the information.

They later own contravened their own statement, by admitting they did have the documents but couldn’t hand them over since it would cost too much.

Transport Scotland’s John Ramsay had told Labour there was no public interest in the information requested and the blacked-out information related to the formation of government policy but last night he admitted the redacted material did not concern the trams after all.

NHS orders GPs to avoid prescribing vital drugs

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Cameron sends out thousands of Christmas cards each year

David Cameron has to write thousands of Christmas cards each year, a Freedom of Information investigation by The Guardian revealed. The Telegraph reports that last year the Prime Minister send out 1,410 cards to colleagues, friends and world leaders. Barack Obama, Nicolas Sarkozy, Angela Merkel and Hamid Karzai were among last year’s recipients.



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