The highly anticipated report from Lord Smith over Scottish devolution has revealed that the country will have greater powers over taxation and benefits in the future.
All the mainstream political parties promised that Westminster would grant Scotland enhanced devolution if Scots voted against independence during September's historic referendum.
On 18 September 55% of Scots voted against independence while 45% wanted to break the union.
A day later, the UK government appointed the panel, led by Lord Smith, to analyse what extra powers Scotland could be given over taxation and social issues, without creating an imbalanced schism within the union.
Lord Smith's report confirmed that the package of powers agreed through the Smith Commission process "would not cause detriment to the UK as a whole nor to any of its constituent parts or cause neither the UK Government nor the Scottish Government to gain or lose financially simply as a consequence of devolving a specific power."
Here are the highlights.
The Smith Commission recommended that Scottish politicians should still be allowed to have their say on the UK budget.
It added that Scotland should be allowed to permanently give 16 and 17-year-olds the vote in Scottish elections.
The Smith Commission said Scottish parliament:
- should be given the power to set income tax rates and bands on earned income
- all income tax raised in Scotland will stay in Scotland
Powers to create new benefits and top-up reserved benefits and adjust the benefits cap.
Greater control over:
- Benefits for carers, disabled people and those who are ill
i) Attendance Allowance
ii) Carer's Allowance, Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
iii) Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
iv) Industrial Injuries Disablement Allowance and Severe Disablement Allowance.
- Benefits which currently comprise the Regulated Social Fund
i) Cold Weather
ii) Payment, Funeral Payment
iii) Sure Start Maternity Grant
iv) Winter Fuel Payment
- New arrangements will operate in Scotland for DLA/PIP claimants to be agreed between the Scottish and UK Governments
i) The Scottish Parliament will have complete autonomy in determining the structure and value of the benefits
- Responsibility for the following benefits will remain reserved:
i) Bereavement Allowance
ii) Bereavement Payment
iii) Child Benefit
iv) Guardian's Allowance
v) Maternity Allowance
vi) Statutory Maternity Pay
vii) Statutory Sick Pay
viii) Widowed Parent's Allowance
Advocacy and advice will be devolved to the Scottish Parliament.
Scottish Ministers already have the ability to request that a UK regulatory body carry out a market study of their area of responsibility to examine particular competition issues arising in Scotland.
However, "Scottish Ministers will also have the power to require the Competition and Markets Authority to carry out a full second phase investigation (in the same way as UK Ministers), after such an initial study has been completed, in relation to particular competition issues arising in Scotland."