LAST Friday I visited Port Glasgow High School to learn about the Scottish Football Association (SFA) Cashback School of Football programme.

It’s financed by the Scottish Government’s Cashback for Communities scheme which takes assets from those convicted of offences and invests the money into positive activities for young people.

After listening to the young people from both Port High and St. Stephen’s High School’s talk about their experiences and also how it is helping them with their studies, I was delighted to know that the money is being invested well.

Last Saturday, I attended the official opening of The Bothy at Gourock Train Station. It’s run by Cycling UK and is a new facility to help increase numbers of people using Inverclyde’s growing numbers of cycling and walking routes. I am sure it will prove to be huge success and wish it well.

I’m sure many readers are either becoming confused or bored (or even both) with the Brexit process. It is a process like none other and the internal differences in the UK Cabinet just add to the confusion. I urge Tele readers to stick with it for a bit longer. It’s important that as many people as possible are keeping abreast of the issues as it will affect every one of us and every community.

Next week, the final stage of the EU Withdrawal Bill goes through the UK Parliament. The House of Lords have amended the bill but its anticipated the UK Government and the DUP will overturn some of these amendments. Ultimately, the majority of MSP’s don’t want Holyrood’s powers reduced. Most want them protected.

The UK Government are not providing this assurance and in fact are looking at taking powers back, if they see fit, for up to 7 years. This could in effect mean a number of things happening including GM crops being farmed in Scotland damaging our growing food and drink sector.

The Scottish Government agree that there will need to be common frameworks arranged to help protect jobs and the economy. Removing powers at the whim of the UK Government is therefore clearly something the Scottish Government cannot sign up too.

Finally, I am happy that an agreement has now taken place regarding the budget process in the Scottish Parliament. In recent years, there has been single year funding proposals but this is once again being increased to include multi-year proposals.

This will aid both public and third sector organisations plan their activities. It will also aid the scrutiny process of the Parliament’s committees.